Curtiss-Wright Awarded Development Contract for Sikorsky CH-53K Helicopter

To Supply Blade Fold Distributors and Digital Air Data Computers for Marine Corps’ Heavy Lift Rotorcraft

PARSIPPANY, N.J., March 7, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Curtiss-Wright Corporation (NYSE:CW) today announced that it has received a contract from Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation to develop and supply blade fold distributor units and digital air data computers for the CH-53K heavy lift helicopter for use by the U.S. Marine Corps. The contract has a total potential value of $16 million if development and all aircraft production options and phases are completed.

« Curtiss-Wright has a long standing relationship with Sikorsky and is very pleased to be working on this exciting helicopter program, » said Martin R. Benante, CEO and Chairman of Curtiss-Wright Corporation. « Our blade fold technology and digital air data computers will be key to the CH-53K’s shipboard compatibility which will enable effective deployment from amphibious ships. »

Curtiss-Wright’s Motion Control segment will supply the blade fold units and the digital air data computers. The blade fold units will process the required information to execute the folding or spreading of the main rotor blades, and provide monitoring and status communication with other CH-53K helicopter systems. The digital air data computer provides flight critical height and speed information to the cockpit and other important helicopter systems. Curtiss-Wright is developing and manufacturing the blade fold distributors at its City of Industry, CA, facility and the digital air data computers at its Penny & Giles facility in Christchurch, UK. The initial contract runs through 2011 with the production phase expected to start in 2013.

Sikorsky is a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX). The Sikorsky CH-53E SUPER STALLION™ helicopter is the largest and most powerful helicopter in the United States military. The CH-53K helicopter is expected to replace the CH-53E helicopters that the Marine Corps currently deploys from amphibious assault ships to transport personnel and equipment, and to carry external cargo loads. The CH-53K helicopter is designed to transport heavy payloads over longer distances and will significantly reduce operation and support costs.

About Curtiss-Wright

Curtiss-Wright Corporation is a diversified company headquartered in Parsippany, NJ. The company designs and manufactures products for motion control and flow control applications, and provides metal treatment services. The firm employs approximately 7,600 people worldwide. For more information, visit

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About Curtiss-Wright Controls, Inc.

Headquartered in Charlotte, NC, Curtiss-Wright Controls is the motion control segment of Curtiss-Wright Corporation. With manufacturing facilities around the world, Curtiss-Wright Controls is a leading technology-based organization providing niche motion control products, subsystems and services for the aerospace, defense, naval and industrial markets. For more information, visit


Sikorsky Aerospace Services Delivers Second UH-60 A-A to L Recapitalization Aircraft for Customs & Border Protection Agency

BEEVILLE, Texas — Sikorsky Aerospace Services (SAS) today delivered the second UH-60 aircraft that has undergone « A-A » to « L » recapitalization for use by the U.S. Customs & Border Protection Agency (CBP). Distinguished as the fifth helicopter off the original Black Hawk helicopter production line, this fully upgraded UH-60L model will execute national security missions mandated by the CBP. Nicknamed « 718 » from the last three digits of its identification number, the rebirth of this more than 30-year-old aircraft marks the second U.S. Army recapitalization upgrade performed at SAS’s Military Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility. SAS is the aftermarket business of Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp.

A major aviation facility, SAS MRO has become a pivotal location for aircraft overhaul, repair and upgrades for the United States Department of Defense, other U.S. government agencies, and allied foreign militaries throughout the world. Based largely on the success of the H-60 recapitalization and upgrade program started more than eight years ago at the Corpus Christi Army Depot (CCAD) in Texas, it has proven to be one of the most effective and productive fleet maintenance programs ever accomplished by the U.S. Army.

« After 32 years of service to various U.S. government entities as a model ‘A,’ aircraft 718 has rolled out of SAS MRO essentially a new helicopter. Now a UH-60L model, the aircraft is equipped for enhanced performance alongside all other U.S. Department of Defense service aircraft, » said David Adler, President of Sikorsky Aerospace Services. « We look forward to continuing our upgrade work and providing cost effective solutions to extend the life of the BLACK HAWK helicopter fleet available through the Army’s Excess Defense Article (EDA) program. »

LTC Heyward Wright, Product Manager UH-60A/L/M, participated in the rollout ceremony and stated: « We in the Utility Helicopters Project Office recognize the hard work of the Sikorsky team here at Chase Field. Your efforts on behalf of the Customs and Border Protection Agency will directly support our nation’s security. You have provided America with the latest in vertical flight technology in a sustainable and versatile package. I thank this workforce for your dedication, for your persistence and for the delivery of this aircraft. The crews that fly this helicopter will never know your names – but your fingerprints are forever imprinted on the aircraft behind me. I want to thank those of you who made this possible for your herculean efforts, and I wish the crews who will man this aircraft God Speed. »

Aircraft 718 has undergone major structural modifications to extend the service life of the airframe: upgrade conversions that include engines, dynamic components and flight controls; and several modification work orders advancing the aircraft to the latest US. Army « L » model configuration – including additional requirements specified by the CBP. These features enhance both mission capability and readiness, and bring significantly improved power, durability and reliability to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection fleet.

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacture and service. Its Sikorsky Aerospace Services business designs and applies advanced logistics and supply chain solutions for commercial rotary, military rotary and fixed wing operators. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries worldwide.

Sikorsky Aircraft Completes Minority Investment in Eclipse Aerospace

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. and Eclipse Aerospace, Inc. announced today the completion of a minority equity investment by Sikorsky in Eclipse Aerospace. The companies also entered into a Service Level Agreement pursuant to which Sikorsky will provide global supply chain support and certain production restart services, which will aid Eclipse Aerospace in its efforts to reintroduce production of the Eclipse 500 very light twin engine jet.

Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Eclipse Aerospace provides engineering, service, and support for the fleet of roughly 260 Eclipse 500 twin-engine jets. Sikorsky Aircraft, manufacturer of the Black Hawk helicopter and other iconic aircraft, is a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp.

« The management team at Eclipse Aerospace shares with Sikorsky a passion for quality products and a customer-first commitment. We are pleased to make this equity investment and look forward to providing global support to Eclipse as it works to restart production of its twin engine very light jet, » said Mark Cherry, Vice President of Corporate Strategy and Synergy for Sikorsky.

Eclipse Aerospace currently offers « Total Eclipse » aircraft direct from its factory. These factory refurbished aircraft are configured with the AvioNG integrated flight management system, ability to fly into known ice (FIKI), and coupled auto pilot approach capability for horizontal and vertical approach guidance. These « like new » Total Eclipse Aircraft also come complete with full factory warranty, new paint, and all new interior.

« We are thrilled to announce the closing of this significant investment in Eclipse. Beyond the equity investment, however, we at Eclipse hope to draw from Sikorsky’s significant global supply chain resources and manufacturing experience, » stated Mason Holland, Chairman and CEO of Eclipse Aerospace, Inc. « I have said it before and it is worth repeating: With this agreement we now have it all — a phenomenal fuel efficient twin-engine jet, an enthusiastic customer base and a fantastic engineering, support and service staff, all coupled with the depth and strength of a sound and experienced Sikorsky Aircraft. »

Eclipse Aerospace, Inc. provides engineering, maintenance, service, and support for the fleet of 260 Eclipse 500 very light twin-engine jet aircraft. Adhering to the motto « Customer First, » Eclipse Aerospace is focused on providing a superior customer experience for existing and future owners, operators and pilots of the revolutionary Eclipse 500 jet aircraft. Eclipse Aerospace corporate offices are based in Charleston, SC. Principal operations are located in Albuquerque, N.M. and Chicago, Ill.

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in aircraft design, manufacture and service. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.

Sikorsky Delivers Its First Two S-92 Helicopters for Utility Operations in Afghanistan

COATESVILLE, Pa. — Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp., has delivered two S-92 helicopters to airlift services provider AAR CORP., for operations in Afghanistan. AAR will perform passenger and cargo lift missions on behalf of the United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), a government agency that provides transportation for the Department of Defense.

Both aircraft are certified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to simultaneously carry both passengers and cargo in the same cabin space.

« Deployment to Afghanistan is a tremendous opportunity for AAR and the U.S. Government to see what the multi-mission S-92 aircraft is capable of in some very challenging flight conditions at high altitude, » said Ed Beyer, vice president for Sikorsky Global Helicopters. « The unique interior configuration of these two aircraft also will give AAR greater mission flexibility to perform its utility and transport missions. »

The FAA certified an easily configurable interior with variable seating while carrying up to three 4 ft. sq.-sized cargo pallets secured to rings in the seat tracks and cabin walls to assure crashworthiness. For each pallet, Sikorsky developed a special fire containment cover to contain and suffocate flames, and added smoke detectors. To separate the passengers from cargo, Sikorsky designed a fabric partition, and added a fire extinguisher and Protective Breathing Equipment for passengers and crew.

AAR purchased the two S-92 aircraft following an October 2010 USTRANSCOM contract award valued at $450 million to provide up to five years of airlift service in Afghanistan. Both aircraft are expected to begin operations in Afghanistan during February 2011. AAR already operates 15 Sikorsky S-61N aircraft in various mission roles, including Afghanistan.

« We evaluated a number of alternatives before concluding that the Sikorsky S-92 helicopter was the best choice to meet the arduous demands of supporting tactical lift missions in remote and extremely harsh environments, » said Jeff Schloesser, president of AAR’s Airlift Group during an acceptance ceremony at Sikorsky Global Helicopter’s facility in Coatesville, Pa., where the aircraft are manufactured. « The selection came down to choosing the aircraft that best fulfills the requirements and enables us to offer reliability, responsiveness and the best long-term business case for the military. »

Sikorsky has delivered 129 S-92 helicopters since September 2004 to commercial customers in the oil and gas industry, search and rescue, VIP transport and utility sectors. During those six years, the worldwide S-92 aircraft fleet has accumulated 285,000 flight hours, a record for a commercial fleet of Sikorsky helicopters in a similar timeframe.

A military version of the S-92 airframe – the CH148 helicopter equipped for naval operations – is being designed and produced for the Canadian Government. Additionally, Sikorsky and Lockheed Martin have proposed a variant to the U.S. Navy for the next ‘Marine One’ helicopter fleet to transport the president of the United States.

The standard S-92 aircraft includes a spacious cockpit with excellent exterior visibility, a stand-up cabin for up to 19 passengers, modern avionics with large NVG-compatible displays, a crashworthy fuel system separated from the passenger compartment, and a rear ramp for loading passengers or cargo.

The S-92 was certified to FAA/EASA harmonized Part 29 requirements, as amended through Amendment 47. The S-92 remains the only aircraft to have been certified to this rigorous airworthiness standard without exception or waiver.

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacture, and service. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.

Mexico Federal Police Take Delivery of UH-60M BLACK HAWK Helicopters

09:17 GMT, January 24, 2011 STRATFORD, Connecticut |

The Department of State has delivered three UH-60M BLACK HAWK helicopters to the Government of Mexico’s Federal Police (FP). Designed and manufactured by Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp., the aircraft are the first of six advanced helicopters designed to support Mexico’s law enforcement operations as part of the Merida Initiative, a security cooperation agreement between the two countries.

The three UH-60M aircraft expand the Federal Police force’s existing fleet of seven UH-60L BLACK HAWK helicopters. Operational since 2008, those aircraft have become a critical law enforcement tool for disaster relief, troop transport, rescue, surveillance, and in the fight against organized crime and illegal drug trafficking across Mexico.

Introduced into service with the U.S. Army in 2006, the UH-60M is the latest and most advanced variant of Sikorsky’s successful H-60 BLACK HAWK helicopter series. The U.S. Army took delivery of its 200th ‘M’ model in mid 2010, which comes equipped with an advanced flight control system to reduce pilot workload, and an infrared camera for night operations.

“Use of the forward looking IR sensor, and this BLACK HAWK helicopter’s superior lift range and speed will further enhance the capabilities of the Federal Police to perform their very important law enforcement mission,” said David L. Powell, Sikorsky Vice President of Sales for the Americas.

At a Mexico City reception to recognize delivery of the UH-60M helicopters, Sergei Sikorsky, son of Igor Sikorsky, who designed the first viable helicopter in the 1930s, remarked that helicopter operations in Mexico had lived up to his father’s ardent desire that rotary wing aircraft be deployed for humanitarian purposes.

In the summer of 1945, his father accompanied a 1945 scientific expedition to photograph the interior of Mexico’s erupting Parícutin volcano. The U.S. Army Air Corps and the Government of Mexico arranged for a Sikorsky R-6A helicopter to fly above the crater to help scientists observe the volcano’s interior during more than 100 flights at altitudes as high as 8,000 feet. It is believed the flights were the first ever by a helicopter in Mexico, and the first to conduct scientific observations of an active volcano.

Then in early October 1955, helicopters were again deployed to Mexico, this time by the U.S. Marine Corps from aboard the light aircraft carrier USS Saipan. Their mission: to evacuate thousands of Yucatan residents stranded by flooding caused by Hurricane Janet.

“The thousands of trapped residents whose lives were saved by the biggest helicopter rescue operation of its time was a great source of pride and pleasure to my father,” said Sergei. “I am proud to recognize the excellent work of the Mexico Federal Police to use Sikorsky helicopters for law enforcement.”

Source: Sikorsky