A totally new helicopter from a completely new company made its first flight in Mollis, Switzerland, recently, kicking off the certification program for the single-engine SKYe SH09 built by Marenco Swisshelicopter.
With chief test pilot Dwayne Williams at the controls, the SKYe SH09 performed five short hover flights on October 2, logging 20 minutes in the air. Handling was said to be as expected.
Powered by a Honeywell HTS900-2 turboshaft engine, the all-composite Swisshelicopter is designed to carry one pilot and seven passengers. Marenco claims it has received orders for more than 50. The start-up manufacturer plans to enter production in 12 to 16 months. The price for the helicopter is expected to be around $3 million.
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