Hummingbird Allows Vertical Aviation to Reenter Commercial Market

The company purchased the S-52 series type certificate from Sikorsky.

S-52L Hummingbird
The new four-place S-52L Hummingbird helicopter includes a host of operational and safety features.Vertical Aviation

Orlando-Sanford International Airport-based Vertical Aviation Technologies, Inc. recently purchased type certificate 1H2 from Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, which represents the FAA design approval for the S-52 series helicopters Sikorsky originally developed and certified. Vertical plans to release its own version to the commercial marketplace as the new four-place S-52L Hummingbird.

Brad Clark, president of Vertical Aviation, said, “For 33 years we’ve been selling the S-52 Hummingbird helicopter as an experimental kit. The program has been highly successful; however, the light helicopter commercial market needs more competition, and we believe we can be a market leader. We have a proven product with no development risks.”

The company said in a news release the “new S-52L has been redesigned in order to meet some of the latest FAA regulatory requirements. The basic design for the S-52L such as rotor system and transmission system remain the same however tail surfaces, fuel system, electrical, instrumentation, cowling, interior, main/tail rotor blades, fuselage and flight controls have been redesigned. The powerplant is the new six cylinder 300 hp fuel-injected IO-540 derated to 245 hp manufactured and supported by Continental Motors, Titan Engine division.”

Hummingbird safety features include FAR 27 occupant safety requirements addressing fuel crashworthiness and post-crash fires, seat and surrounding structure protection, energy absorbing wheeled landing gear, automatic collective pitch reduction in the event of powerplant/rotor drive failure and no control restrictions with the smooth three blade articulated rotor.

ADVERTISEMENT