New helicopter manufacturing technologies exemplify Russian innovation and are already boosting the effectiveness of Russian helicopters’ business operations
28.06.2012 / Moscow

 Russian Helicopters, a leading global designer and manufacturer of helicopters, including a number of the most renowned, innovative and widely used models demonstrated innovative technological processes and unique production capacities for manufacturing mechanical units and components for Russian helicopters at Stand F3/1-6/A (Pavilion F3) at the second international Engineering Technologies forum underway in the Moscow Region town of Zhukovsky.

A modern foundry for producing helicopter body parts from magnesium and aluminium alloys, installed at Progress Arsenyev Aviation Company (AAC Progress), part of the Russian Helicopters holding, allows complex and precision castings to be produced while ensuring high product quality and substantially lower expenses on foundry operations.

This unique facility as already become the holding’s main competence centre for foundry work and has helped speed up the production of the new Ka-52 Alligator military attack helicopter. AAC Progress also manufactures parts for other enterprises of the holding and external clients.

Advanced automated milling machines for aluminium alloy components is operating at Kazan Helicopters, which manufactures the light Ansat-U training helicopter and the medium multipurpose Mi-8/17, the most widely used helicopter in aviation history. These cutting-edge machines allow for multi-axis milling of parts based on electronic 3D models. This technology has allowed the holding to reduce production time and expenses while improving quality.

As a part of Russian Helicopters’ modernization programme, Reductor-PM has installed and is now launching a chemical-thermal processing line which is a first of its kind not only in Russia but worldwide. The unit incorporates vacuum furnaces produced by BMI (France), chamber furnaces from IVA (Germany), quenching presses from Klingelnberg (Germany) and Gleason (USA), and other supplementary equipment.

This new processing line will conduct thermal tempering of helicopter parts made of structural and alloy steel in a temperature range of -70°С to 1100°С, and this heat treatment can be carried out in a protected or open-air environment with the use of special presses. The uniqueness of this line is that it covers the entire spectrum of technical operations: the complex geometry of the parts and peculiarities of their technical requirements which so often have stumped foreign producers.

Another novel technology which is slated to appear at Reductor-PM in the near future will substantially reduce expenses and marks an important step in Russian Helicopters’ environmental programme. A highly effective closed-loop unit for testing transmission gearboxes manufactured for all Russian-made helicopters produced by the holding’s enterprises was demonstrated to experts at the forum.

This modern energy-saving test unit does not require expensive gas-turbine powerplants and is free of fire and explosion risks due to the fact that aircraft fuel is not used. It is also environmentally friendly and does not require an air filtration system. Furthermore, it operates quietly and is fully automatic. This new control system eliminates the factor of human error and also reduces expenses on repairs, stand maintenance and endurance testing of manufactured products.

Russian Helicopters, JSC (part of Russian Technologies State Corporation) is one of the global leaders in helicopter production and the only helicopter design and production powerhouse in Russia. Russian Helicopters is headquartered in Moscow. The company comprises five helicopter production facilities, two design bureaus, a spare parts production and repair facility, as well as an aftersale service branch responsible for maintenance and repair in Russia and all over the world. Its helicopters are popular among Russian ministries and state authorities (Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Emergency Control Ministry), operators (Gazpromavia, UTair), major Russian corporations. Over 8000 helicopters of Soviet/Russian make are operated in 110 countries worldwide. Traditionally the demand is highest in the Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, Russia, and CIS countries. Russian Helicopters was established in 2007. In 2011 its IFRS revenues increased 27.8% to RUB 103.9 billion. Deliveries reached 262 helicopters.

Partners of Russian Helicopters: AirTaxi Service (interior completions and maintenance); Tranzas (software, navigation systems, aviation simulators); CSTS Dinamika (technical training means for aviation flight and engineering personnel); BETA AIR (testing equipment and aviation electronics); Ural Works of Civil Aviation (repair of helicopter engines and components, as well as gearboxes).

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