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Turbulence And Helicopters  
User currently offlineGoinv From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 264 posts, RR: 2
Posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 7924 times:

Do helicopters suffer from chop/turbulence as do aircraft ?

You hear many stories about how turbulence affects civilian flights but I honestly can't say I have ever heard a story of helicopters and turbulence.

Is this because far more people travel in commercial aircraft compared to helicopters so , by default, there are more people to witness such events ? Or is is because of the way that helicopters fly - by "pushing" the air down to stay aloft rather than "pushing" it vertically as in the case of an aeroplane ?


Be who you are, The world was made to measure for your smile. So Smile.
12 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineCancidas From Poland, joined Jul 2003, 4112 posts, RR: 11
Reply 1, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 7898 times:

helo's don't fly as high as commercial a/c. in my expierience, i haven't experienced the major chop in ahelo as i have up in the flight levels. actually, most times i've only hit turbulence on a long cross-country flight when cruising in upper air.


"...cannot the kingdom of salvation take me home."
User currently offlineCptSpeaking From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 639 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 7889 times:

Most of why you don't feel turbulence as much in a helicopter is because the wings are flexible. Unlike airplanes where you've got wings that are fixed and fairly rigid, the blades on a helicopter are designed to flap up and down, so more bumps are absorbed before they are felt in the cabin.

Your CptSpeaking



...and don't call me Shirley!!
User currently offlineKELPkid From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 6264 posts, RR: 4
Reply 3, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 7848 times:

I think they can generate substantial amounts of wake turbulence...

I was once following a US Army CH-47 Chinook on the ILS at TIW (Tacoma Narrows, WA). The tower controller told us "Caution Wake Turbulence".



Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
User currently offlineAvt007 From Canada, joined Jul 2000, 2132 posts, RR: 5
Reply 4, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 7840 times:

The ride can be bumpy sometimes, but generally speaking the ride is smoother when compared to a private aircraft, a Cessna or light twin. The size and weight are fairly close, but helicopters seem to ride rough air better. I prefer a helicopter over GA aircraft.

User currently offlineFredT From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2002, 2185 posts, RR: 26
Reply 5, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 7814 times:

I'd suggest starting by looking at the relative magnitudes of the wing loading/disc loading.

When there is enough turbulence for you to hear about it in the media, it is almost always related to the heavy clear air turbulence which can be found up in jet stream territory, i e the higher flight levels. Helicopters don't venture there.

Quoting KELPkid (Reply 3):
I think they can generate substantial amounts of wake turbulence...

About the same as any other aircraft. Substitute wing span for disc diameter.

Quoting Goinv (Thread starter):
Or is is because of the way that helicopters fly - by "pushing" the air down to stay aloft rather than "pushing" it vertically as in the case of an aeroplane ?

You'll find that aircraft and helicopters stay in the air in the very same way - by pushing air down.



I thought I was doing good trying to avoid those airport hotels... and look at me now.
User currently offlineUH60FtRucker From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 7786 times:

Quoting KELPkid (Reply 3):
I was once following a US Army CH-47 Chinook on the ILS at TIW (Tacoma Narrows, WA). The tower controller told us "Caution Wake Turbulence".

Yes, each helicopter produces a good amount turbulence.

Typically when flying in a stacked formation, you will encounter the wake turbulence behind the chalks in front of you.

Also, while on the ground, and a helicopter is hovering close by, or slowing hovers by you... you will encounter their disturbed air. And if you are hovering as well, then it becomes a little more difficult to hold a stable hover.

...well... so I hear. I am steady as a rock when hovering. I've never encountered issues.  Wink

-UH60


User currently offlineMetroliner From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2007, 1065 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 7765 times:

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 6):
you will encounter their disturbed air

yeah... i got this once when putting an ASK-13 training glider down over a JetRanger that was on the taxiway having just started up... scared the pants off me! and it was only my third solo flight. i think my instructor was very curious as to why i had landed about 200m short of where he wanted me to be...

thank god it wasn't a UH-60, or i'd have been picking grass from between my teeth!  Smile

toni



Set the controls for the heart of the Sun
User currently offlineBhill From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 925 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 7733 times:

Helicopters ARE turbulence!!!  Wink ' cause mother Earth keeps trying to push them away..
As a previous Army medic, starting an IV in a Huey was a bitch!! Funny..I don't ever remeber having a smooth ride in a chopper...Either on a medivac flight or when I was with the artillery folks going air mobile with a 105 stapped under us...but the static generated...WOW!!!

Cheers



Carpe Pices
User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29698 posts, RR: 59
Reply 9, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 7732 times:

Quoting KELPkid (Reply 3):
I was once following a US Army CH-47 Chinook on the ILS at TIW (Tacoma Narrows, WA). The tower controller told us "Caution Wake Turbulence".

Jeezus, that is an understatement by the controler.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineWNCrew From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 1414 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (7 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 7730 times:

I used to take a helicopter to/from work everyday several years ago (I was NOT an FA then)....and we had lots of chop, also weightlessness (a few seconds here and there) because of mountain waves.


ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
User currently offlineZvocio79 From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 172 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (7 years 1 month 2 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 7597 times:

Helicopter also have one or more vibration absorver located around the nose and towards the center of gravity that reduces vibrations....they are like many pieces of heavy steal put together (150Lbs) that vibrate almost like a guitar string when been touch.

User currently offlineCancidas From Poland, joined Jul 2003, 4112 posts, RR: 11
Reply 12, posted (7 years 1 month 2 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 7571 times:

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 6):
Yes, each helicopter produces a good amount turbulence.

Typically when flying in a stacked formation, you will encounter the wake turbulence behind the chalks in front of you.

Also, while on the ground, and a helicopter is hovering close by, or slowing hovers by you... you will encounter their disturbed air. And if you are hovering as well, then it becomes a little more difficult to hold a stable hover.

...well... so I hear. I am steady as a rock when hovering. I've never encountered issues.

was getting checked out in a jetranger a few years back, and sat on the grass abeam a run-up area at FRG. was in a good mood so i pulled up on the collective just a little, enough to get the warrior next to me with my former CFI a few bumpy minutes. he didn't totally hate me for that, until i got TO clearance before his student was done with his checklist.  duck 



"...cannot the kingdom of salvation take me home."
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