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Sikorsky Copters Validated in Europe

Zacks Equity Research

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., a subsidiary of diversified business conglomerate United Technologies Corp. (UTX), recently received certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (:EASA) for its S-92 helicopters. With this validation, the S-92 helicopters have become the most compliant aircraft in its class with additional certifications from the Federal Aviation Administration (:FAA) and the National Civil Aviation Agency of Brazil.

The European certification for the software update to the Avionics Management System (AMS) version 8.0 fortifies the air-traffic control mechanism system with enhanced safety measures. It offers real-time satellite-based position and heading data through a fully integrated Traffic Collision Avoidance System (:TCAS) II and Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) Out.

The display enhancements to existing functionality in the S-92 helicopters enable better support and co-ordination in mission capabilities, such as enhanced Search and Rescue (SAR) missions and the Rig Approach. The Rig Approach offers a fully automated approach capability to pilots flying out to oil platforms and rigs and has higher safety margins than any other offshore procedure approaches in the offing. It helps to reduce the workload at critical times during the instrument arrival procedure and provides additional barriers to CFIT (controlled flight into terrain). This in turn provides offshore oil operators an easier maneuver and reduces cockpit workload by 60% from 17 pilot-initiated items to only 7.

Sikorsky is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of military and commercial helicopters, and also provides aftermarket helicopter and aircraft parts and services for its parent company United Technologies. At present, major production programs at Sikorsky include the UH-60M Black Hawk medium-transport helicopters and HH-60M Medevac helicopters for the U.S. and foreign governments, the S-70 Black Hawk for foreign governments, the MH-60S and MH-60R helicopters for the U.S. Navy, the International Naval Hawk for multiple naval missions, and the S-76 and S-92 helicopters for commercial operations.

Based in Hartford, CT, United Technologies provides high-end technology products and services to the building systems and aerospace industries worldwide. The company is a diversified business conglomerate serving various end markets such as aerospace, defense and commercial construction. The business diversification allows the company to remain profitable during tough economic times.

The operations of the company are primarily classified into two principal businesses: commercial and aerospace. Under its commercial business, the company has Otis and the UTC Climate, Controls & Security division, which combined the former Carrier and UTC Fire & Security divisions. The aerospace business of the company consists of Sikorsky aircraft and the UTC Propulsion & Aerospace Systems, which includes UTC Aerospace Systems and Pratt & Whitney divisions.

United Technologies presently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Other notable companies in the industry include Carlisle Companies Incorporated (CSL), Hitachi Ltd. (HTHIY) and Sumitomo Corporation (SSUMY), each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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