The Defense Solutions division of Curtiss-Wright Corporation (Stand S9-231) has unveiled a new low-cost, single operator shipboard helicopter handling system at DSEI, writes Richard Scott.
Designed specifically to address the size and weight constraints of smaller ships, the Manual Aircraft Straighten and Traverse (MAST) system is a more compact and lighter variation of the company’s proven TC-ASIST helicopter handing system, but with elements of the MANTIS deck handler used by the UK Royal Navy.
MAST provides an affordable alternative for securing a helicopter to the flight deck during manoeuvring and traversing operations in conditions up to Sea State 6. It connects to the helicopter through a simple main landing gear interface, which eliminates the need for a probe to be integrated into the airframe.
MAST is track-based and controlled using a chest-pack-mounted portable control unit worn by the operator.
This approach eliminates the need for a permanent handling system console on board the already space-constrained ship.