Heli-Expo – VIH Aerospace working on extending range of Sikorsky S-92
VIH Aerospace are designing a modification to increase the operational range of the Sikorsky S-92. The three tank system allows for higher fuel loading.
While oil production around the world is currenty experiencing a significant downturn, it was already evident prior to the price starting to fall at the end of 2014 that exploration would need to move further offshore.
There are still significant oil reserves around the world which have not yet been tapped, or are only just opening up, such as the area of the south Atlantic around the Falkland Islands. Bristow have three S-92s based in the Falklands, two dedicated to oil support and a third which is equipped for a secondary SAR role.
VIH Aerospace is looking at their current S-92 Auxiliary Fuel Tank system to incorporate a third tank and new Fuel Management Display. General Manager Arne Arneson indicates that preliminary work has begun to investigate the technical requirements of a three tank system that would meet both operational and regulatory requirements. He anticipates a timeline of four months to complete research and development for the system and an additional 12 months to prototype and engineer a final product suitable for Supplemental Type Certification and subsequent market availability.