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Helicopter Flight Data Monitoring

What is Helicopter Flight Data Monitoring (HFDM)?


HFDM is the systematic, pro-active use of digital flight data from routine helicopter operations to improve aviation safety.


It is most effective as an integral part of a Safety Management System (SMS) operated within a ‘Just Culture’ environment.


HFDM programmes assist operators to identify, quantify, assess and address operational risks.


HUMS and HFDM often monitor similar parameters, however an HFDM program will routinely monitor a greater number of parameters than a typical HUM system. Consequently, when an exceedance is recorded in the HUMS data, HFDM data can be of enormous benefit in establishing the aircraft condition when the HUMS exceedance occurred.


Correlation of both sets of data can assist in the analysis of the HUMS exceedance when deciding if it really is a true exceedance, or can be classified as false due to aircraft flight conditions.

For a successful HFDM program the data, like HUMS, has to be routinely monitored and analysed. This requires a considerable amount of experience on behalf of the operator. During the normal or routine daily operations there are probably thousands of minor events which will quite often go unnoticed not just by the flight crew but by ground staff, passengers and engineering.


Consequently, it is often more beneficial for operators to use a fully hosted HFDM Service or a Managed Service where the operator hosts their own flight data. There are very few companies who can offer this service, particularly with the experience necessary to accurately analyse the data and provide the relevant feedback to the operator.

For HFDM services, HeliVibe recommends Helinalysis, the world’s only Specialist Helicopter Flight Data Monitoring (HFDM) Services Provider that can deliver a programme tailored to the operators requirements.

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