The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) issued a validation type certificate for Sikorsky Aircraft’s S-76D, allowing Sikorsky to begin delivering the commercial helicopter to customers in China. The S-76D is the latest S-76 model to be validated by CAAC having been preceded by S-76A and S-76C. More than 30 Sikorsky S-76 aircraft currently operate in China.
Yunnan Jingcheng Group will be the first company in China to take delivery of an S-76D helicopter. The company contracted for a new S-76D in 2012 and is scheduled to receive the aircraft this month. Jingcheng already flies an S-92 helicopter for use in transporting corporate and government VIPs. In September 2013, a second S-92 aircraft was purchased with delivery expected in November 2015. The S-76D has a current backlog exceeding $650 million, and Sikorsky has delivered more than 800 S-76 helicopters to customers globally since 1979, contributing daily to a growing 6.4-million-plus fleet flight hours total.
The S-76D helicopter’s baseline equipment includes Pratt & Whitney Canada PW210S engines, a Thales TopDeck integrated avionics system and four-axis autopilot, health and usage monitoring system (HUMS) incorporated into fleet monitoring and analysis, active vibration control, and all-composite, flaw-tolerant main rotor blades. A rotor ice protection system (RIPS) for all-weather capability will be available as an option.