CHC Helicopter Unveils ClearSkies: Flight Planning Software

(Oilandgaspress) CHC Helicopter, the global helicopter services company specialising in transportation and search and rescue operations, today announces the launch of ClearSkies, the industry’s first “lowest carbon” rotary wing flight planning software, developed to optimise and enhance the sustainability of its flight operations.

Developed and tested in-house by experienced CHC Helicopter technical pilots, ClearSkies has been incorporated into the company’s bespoke Operational Flight Planning System (OFPS) to enhance flight profiles, reduce fuel use and optimise CO2 emission reductions.

The enhanced flight planning software maps the most fuel-efficient routes for customers, taking into account key factors including helicopter type, distance, altitude, weight of load, and current weather conditions at the time of flight.

Results from CHC’s aircraft trials of the new software in Australia and Brazil found that ClearSkies delivers an average reduction in CO2 emissions of at least 5 percent, with no discernible change in customer flight programmes.

Simon Roddy, SVP Shell UK, and Jorn Madsen, CEO CHC Helicopter, at CHC’s Aberdeen Hanger’

ClearSkies is now available for customers globally on CHC’s AW139, AW189 and S92 fleets, with further rollout planned for its H175 fleet. CHC is already using the software for flights for some customers, including for Shell UK.
CHC provide regular reporting to ClearSkies customers on their flight optimisation and verified reductions in fuel use and CO2 emissions.

Jørn Madsen, CEO of CHC, said: “We’re committed to taking good care of our people, our business operations and the environment. The aviation industry has an important role to play in reducing global emissions and we’re proud to spearhead more sustainable flights and a reduction of our carbon footprint in the helicopter sector.”

John Hopkinson, VP Safety, Compliance and Flight Standards, added: “We firmly believe that sustainable practices and responsible operations go hand in hand with business success. Through technological advancements delivered by our team, we are able to deliver demonstrable reductions in CO2 emissions for our customers. Together, we can contribute to a more sustainable and greener future for the aviation industry and beyond.”

As part of its ClearSkies programme, CHC is also introducing Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), providing a lower carbon alternative for customers. Using SAF results in a typical reduction in lifecycle carbon emissions by around 80 percent in comparison to the traditional jet fuel it replaces.

CHC now offers SAF at its bases in Norway, Aberdeen (Scotland) and Den Helder (Netherlands). Further roll-out is being planned across its operations in the coming months. CHC is also making SAF available as a customer option at selected offshore locations this year through a partnership between Air bp and Swire Energy Services.

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