AHS International: Prevailing In “Demanding Environments”

For Immediate Release
Mike Hirschberg, Executive Director
director@vtol.org                                                                             

AHS International: Prevailing In “Demanding Environments”

PHOENIX, Arizona (May 21, 2013) – Attendance and presentations at AHS International’s 69th Annual Forum and Technology Display this week highlight its standing as the premier event for government, industry and academia to work together in advancing vertical flight technology.

Nearly 1,100 vertical flight professionals – from military leaders and top manufacturing executives to the next generation of pioneers – have come to the Phoenix Convention Center through May 23 for Forum 69, which opened today with the theme, “Advancing Vertical Flight Technology in Demanding Environments.”

Forum 69’s program and related events include presentations of more than 225 papers on the latest vertical flight research and 40-plus special session presentations, such as panel discussions on efforts to develop the first human-powered helicopter, reduce rotorcraft noise signatures and define advanced technologies for civilian and military aircraft.

The first day’s featured event was a panel discussion among top executives from the rotorcraft manufacturers AgustaWestland, Bell Helicopter Textron, Boeing, Eurocopter, Lockheed Martin and Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation. Today’s proceedings also included updates from leaders of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps’ vertical flight aircraft programs for the utility/attack H-1, heavy-lift H-53, and H-60 Seahawk as well as the presidential helicopter fleet and the V-22 Osprey.

“The strong showing here demonstrates that our Annual Forum remains the premier event for government, industry and academia to gather to exchange ideas, discuss the latest breakthroughs in theory and technology and work together to tackle the toughest challenges in vertical flight,” said AHS International Executive Director Mike Hirschberg today in opening the 69th Annual Forum and Technology Display.”

Participation in Forum 69 is particularly impressive given recent events. When organizers chose the theme a year ago, they had in mind rotorcraft operational environments like austere landing and takeoff sites, high altitudes, hot temperatures and reduced visibility, as well as the quest for safer operations and much faster aircraft. Then U.S. government leaders failed to resolve longstanding budget disputes, triggering this year’s indiscriminate “sequestration” cuts that are harming operations, acquisition and research and development programs across the board – including vertical flight ones.

“These have been extraordinary times,” Hirschberg said. “But vertical flight professionals have been conquering demanding environments since our industry was born, and we are all continuing that tradition this week.”

About AHS International

AHS International celebrated its 70th anniversary in February. Founded in 1943 as the American Helicopter Society, it is the world's premier professional vertical flight technical society. Based in Alexandria, Virginia, AHS International has more than 6,000 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.

Photos from Forum 69 are posted on www.facebook.com/AHS.Intl. Follow us on Twitter at #Forum69

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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