Erickson Inc., a worldwide operator, maintainer, and manufacturer of utility aircraft, announced at Heli Expo the S-64F+, a new production line of the legacy Air Crane helicopter.
Erickson's recent aircraft orders and deliveries signaled ongoing demand for the S-64 as a firefighting platform.
The future S-64F+ will include these innovations and enhancements:
• A modern engine, enhancing range and fuel efficiency
• Composite main rotor blades
• Enhanced cockpit, flight control system
• Improved water cannon
Erickson has identified the investment in product, plant, and equipment required to support its customers and these initiatives. Erickson is scheduling meetings with prospective buyers for the S-64F+ with its aviation sales experts.
Announced separately, Erickson and Lockheed Martin company Sikorsky have agreed to develop the next generation of pilot-optional nighttime firefighting solutions, integrating Sikorsky’s MATRIX technology into a digitally enabled fire management system never-before used in night firefighting.
Flight controls and navigation systems powered by MATRIX will enhance cockpit awareness and flight crew safety during day and night operations.
“We are pleased to be working on this important initiative with Sikorsky. Since adopting care of the S-64 global fleet in 1994, Erickson has continuously modernized the platform to support critical missions,” says Doug Kitani, Erickson CEO.
Erickson offers the S-64 Air Crane helicopter as the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) as well as manufacturing key aerospace parts for aerospace OEMs. Its commercial aerial services include the operation of 20 Erickson owned and operated S-64 Air Crane helicopters to perform firefighting, powerline construction, timber harvesting, HVAC, and specialized heavy-lift for oil and gas. Founded in 1971, Erickson is headquartered in Portland, Oregon, and maintains operations in North America, South America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, and Australia.