AHS International Celebrates 70 Years Of Promoting Advances in Vertical Flight Technology


For Immediate Release

March 5, 2013
Mike Hirschberg
(703) 684-6777 x111

AHS International Celebrates 70 Years Of Promoting Advances in Vertical Flight Technology

LAS VEGAS – March 5, 2013 – AHS International, the world’s premier professional vertical flight technical society, is celebrating 70 years of advancing the state of the art of rotary wing technology and promoting its application throughout the globe at Heli-Expo 2013.

On February 25, 1943 – before a single helicopter was operational in the United States – a group of engineers and managers banded together with military and civilian operators, mechanics, pilots and enthusiasts to form the American Helicopter Society. Today, AHS International has 6,100 members from 44 countries. They include engineers, scientists, corporate executives, civilian and military program managers, pilots, safety specialists, students, and leaders in manufacturing, production, purchasing, procurement and maintenance.

“For seven decades, AHS International and its members have brought together industry, academia and governments to tackle the toughest challenges in vertical flight,” said Mike Hirschberg, AHS International Executive Director. “We are committed to providing global leadership for scientific, technical, educational and legislative initiatives that advance the state of the art of vertical flight for the benefit of all operators – commercial, civil and military.”

Among the challenges AHS International is helping to tackle is the successful flight of a human powered helicopter. Three teams – from the University of Maryland, AeroVelo in Toronto and Cal Poly – are currently vying to win the AHS Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter Competition. Set up in 1980 by the AHS Board of Directors, that competition now offers a $250,000 prize (funded by Sikorsky Aircraft) for such a helicopter that hovers for at least one minute and reaches a height off the ground of at least 3 meters (9.84 feet) while hovering over a 10 meter by 10 meter (32.8 foot by 32.8 foot) area.

Such initiatives help achieve AHS International’s objectives, which include:

  • Expanding knowledge about vertical flight technology and promoting its application around the world.
  • Advancing rotorcraft safety, for instance by leading the 2005 establishment of the International Helicopter Safety Team.
  • Advocating for vertical flight R&D funding from industry, the government and the military, for example by securing NASA and U.S. military funding for basic vertical lift research.
  • Helping to train the next generation of vertical flight leaders through annual scholarships, design competitions and prizes.


For more information about AHS International, see us at Heli-Expo 2013 Booth N6304 or visit www.vtol.org

About AHS International

AHS International, based in Alexandria, Va., is the world's premier professional vertical flight technical society. On February 25, 2013, the Society marked 70 years of bringing together industry, academia and governments to tackle the toughest challenges in vertical flight.

AHS International has 6,100 members in 44 countries, including the world’s leading vertical flight manufacturers, suppliers and education and research institutions. Among the Society’s members are engineers, scientists, corporate executives, civilian and military program managers, pilots, safety specialists, students, and leaders in manufacturing, production, purchasing, procurement and maintenance.

This press release is also available as a pdf.

AHS International – The Vertical Flight Technical Society
217 N. Washington St., Alexandria, VA 22314, USA
phone: 1-703-684-6777; toll free: 1-855-AHS-INTL; fax: 1-703-739-9279
Send email; web site: www.vtol.org

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