JIP to re-assess guidelines on helicopter turbulence

Offshore staff

HØVIK, NorwayDNV GL is launching a joint industry project (JIP) to improve understanding of conditions for safe offshore helicopter operations.

Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) are widely used in analyses of offshore helideck turbulence levels. But the criteria imposed by current international regulations may not reflect operational experience, DNV GL claims.

Unsafe circumstances can be a result of wind-induced turbulence, thought to be the single largest influence on workload and safety hazards.

Helideck turbulence impairment provides information during design and operation phases. It assists pilots in predicting high-risk flight conditions, and engineers in anticipating the period of time that helicopter transportation may be unavailable for use.

Consultant Thábata Maciel said: “DNV GL has observed that current turbulence analyses might not reflect the operational experience of pilots across the world due to conservative restrictions in international standards.

“This concern lies not only on the additional costs in design changes; but also in the carelessness that may evolve from the perception that the study does not represent real-life restrictions to flight.”

The JIP will lead to development of a recommended practice to provide easy-to interpret guidelines for pilots and engineers and to guarantee reproducibility of analysis.


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