China’s civil aviation authority, the CAAC, certified the Robinson R66 Turbine helicopter on April 29, almost one year to the day the certification process began. China joins the now over fifty countries including Australia, Brazil, Canada, EASA member states (Europe), Japan, South Africa, and the U.S. that have certified the R66.
As China relaxes airspace restrictions and its general aviation continues to develop through investments in infrastructure and training, helicopters are expected to play a more prominent role. With low operating and acquisition costs, the high performance five-place R66 is well suited for the country’s emerging rotorcraft market.
Foreign markets have historically represented two-thirds of Robinson’s sales.
To date, approximately 500 R66 helicopters operate in more than thirty countries and Robinson estimates total fleet hours at over 160,000. In response to customer feedback, glass and touchscreen avionics were recently added to the R66’s options list.