Software for Sikorsky S-76D Eases Pilot Workload

Sikorsky has announced the certification of new avionics software that adds capabilities to the cockpit of the S-76D helicopter and reduces the workload for its pilots. The V400 avionics software makes flying the S-76D simple enough that the FAA has signed off on single-pilot operations for pilots flying under IFR rules with the new software.

The new software adds Sirius XM weather overlays, ADS-B, and LPV approach capabilities, which allow pilots to fly precision approaches into an increasing list of airports that don't have ILS capabilities, to the Thales TopDeck integrated avionics system.

The S-76D entered the market late last year and is powered by Pratt & Whitney's PW210S engines producing up to 1,239 shp. The versatile helicopter is already in use on offshore oilrig, search and rescue and EMT operators, and Sikorsky recently delivered the first helicopter with an executive VIP interior installation. Sikorsky has delivered more than 800 S-76s since the model was first introduced in 1979.

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Pia Bergqvist joined FLYING in December 2010. A passionate aviator, Pia started flying in 1999 and quickly obtained her single- and multi-engine commercial, instrument and instructor ratings. After a decade of working in general aviation, Pia has accumulated almost 3,000 hours of flight time in nearly 40 different types of aircraft.

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