Donaldson barrier filters assist Australian aerial firefighters


Donaldson Aerospace & Defense, a division of Donaldson Company, Inc., continues to provide critical engine protection for helicopter operators battling Australian wildfires this year.  The companys inlet barrier filter (IBF) systems are popular with firefighting operators worldwide and heavily utilized in corporate, air medical, utility and maritime/offshore missions as well.
Donaldson IBFs support maximum aircraft availability for aerial firefighters including the brave pilots and crews at Australias Commercial Helicopters.
The past couple of months very dry weather combined with high, dense grass cover has led to an increased number of bushfires, which is keeping us very busy, stated Commercials president, Marc Rogers. Several of our helicopters have been flying over 10 hours per day on firefighting duties.
Our company specializes in operating in very remote, harsh conditions such as those seen in firefighting, and we wouldn’t consider operating our helicopters without Donaldson inlet barrier filters, added Rogers. Crews are flying missions from bases in Cooma, Bombala, Tumut and Narramine, New South Wales, and Hobart, Tasmania, as well as the companys headquarters in Mudgee, New South Wales.
The IBF helps prevent engine damage in adverse environments and ramp take-off and landing conditions alike, as well as reducing the effects of salt-air ingestion. According to Donaldson, IBF-equipped operators can experience lower aircraft operating costs without performance penalties.
Rogers and team are ready for other assignments when not fighting bushfires.  The companys Bell JetRanger and LongRanger ships perform aerial spraying, power line surveys, feral animal control and mining/exploration support in the desert area of South Australia.
Much of this activity is very remote work and can be extremely hot this time of year, over 50 degrees Celsius or 122 Fahrenheit, meaning we need maximum turbine airflows combined with maximum protection, said Rogers. It is also an incredibly dusty environment. We couldn’t operate without IBFs installed otherwise wed suffer severe damage to our engines and unacceptable operating costs.
Providing a comprehensive line of IBF solutions, Donaldson Aerospace & Defense is an industry leader in the design, development and manufacture of high-performance engine IBF systems for commercial and military propulsion systems. Through its St. Louis, Mo. location, Donaldson provides certified IBF solutions for the AgustaWestland AW109E/S/SP, AW119 Koala, AW119Ke and AW139; Bell 205A1, 206B, 407, 206L-3/4, 206L-1(C30), 206LR, 230, 429 and 430; Eurocopter EC130, AS350 B/BA/B1/B2/B3/B3e, AS350s with Soloy or Heli-Lynx Honeywell engine conversions; and MD Helicopters MD 369H Series, MD 500D/E/F and MD 900/902.

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