Feedback June 2013

By Staff Writer | June 1, 2013
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R&W’s Question of the Month

Which manufacturer(s) do you think will win the U.S. Navy’s relaunched VXX Presidential Helicopter
replacement program?

Let us know, and look for your and others’
wresponses in a future issue. You’ll find contact information below.


Other Side of History

I was enjoying reading the May 2013 print edition, when one article caught my attention. I’m talking about Andrew Drwiega’s article on page 20, “Margaret Thatcher’s Falklands Defense Required Extensive Helicopter Operations on Land and at Sea.”

The Falklands/Malvinas conflict is still running in the United Nations and other international forums, as there is still no final decision the correct way to refer to it, as I mentioned naming the islands with both English and the Argentine titles.

As the subject is very sensitive one, and you have many readers not only in Argentina but in South America too, I think is more appropriate to mention the islands with both names, Falklands/Malvinas is not just an Argentine subject but a Latin American one. Besides that, for a magazine that tries to be more “international” as stated in the same edition, ignoring the other side of the history – Argentine helicopter operation in the war – seems unfair.

Pablo Slavik, Helicopter Pilot

San Juan Province Government Aviation Branch

Former Argentine Army Aviation Pilot

V-22 Airborne Early Warning and Control

Online response to “Osprey Takes on Greyhound in Fight Over U.S. Navy’s COD,” May 2013, page 18:

The VRC’s need/require augment by Bell-Boeing V-22s for long range delivery of time sensitive/mission critical (TS/MC) cargo to amphibious and STOVL platforms. This will solve so many problems for the Amphibious Ready Groups. Should the light carrier concept actually take off with Marine F-35Bs on board, a tanker will be required. This is a relatively easy modification to the V-22. Rigid fuel bladder refueling modules would require more plumbing and perhaps additional support equipment tied down in the cargo area. The more difficult problem is airborne early warning and control for light carrier battle groups. The V-22 cargo space is spacious compared to the cramped spaces in the E-2C. Additional consoles and mission support should be possible. Since this support will be for amphibious missions as well, the extra space will be filled quickly.

Since some of our allies have a similar requirement, some kind of co-development should be possible between the U.S., Great Britain, Italy, India and perhaps Spain. The foreign military sales (FMS) market is opening for the V-22. If a viable pressurized AEW&C V-22 with a reasonable persistence on station can be devised, it may have customers in everyone with a little flattop.

Curtis Conway

Poor Judgment

Online response to “NTSB: Texting, Distracted Multitasking Factors in 2011 Helicopter EMS Crash,”, April 2013:

It’s sad that we have to continue to see and read reports of pilot error in too many of these accidents. Sad three innocent people who were counting on the pilot being a professional, ended up losing their lives due to his poor judgment skills. Everyone is a loser here.

Andre Leonard

Rotorcraft Design Versus Fixed-Wing: Where Do You Draw the Line?

The following comments appeared at dwing in response to the question, “With several forward-looking rotorcraft designs beginning to emerge such as Sikorsky’s X2 and Eurocopter’s X3, how do you define what makes up a helicopter?”


Ray Leavitt: Just categorize it as VTOL (vertical takeoff and landing).


Ian Phillis: The answer is in the name, if it is fixed-wing then all the surfaces that provide lift are fixed. If any of the surfaces that provide lift move in relation to the aircraft then it is a conventional or composite helicopter.


Michael Reilly: Can it glide without power? If so, why?


Burkhard Domke: How about differentiating by the direction of airflow through the rotor plane in cruise: With helicopters, airflow enters from the top. With autogyros, the airflow enters from below. The latter should be true for the X3, the X2 is a helicopter unless the coaxial rotors go into autorotation in high-speed cruise. The V-22 is a... err... tiltrotor.

Do you have comments on the rotorcraft industry or recent articles and viewpoints we’ve published? Send them to Editor, Rotor & Wing, 4 Choke Cherry Road, Second Floor, Rockville, Md. 20850, USA, fax us at 1-301-354-1809 or e-mail us at Please include a city and state or province with your name and ratings. We reserve the right to edit all submitted material.

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