Aerial Firefighting with Rotor

Missions / Aerial Firefighting

The R550X is a Type 3 helicopter that can fill multiple firefighting roles, from aerial ignition and initial attack to tactical resupply.

Overview

Wildland fire is a highly complex aviation environment, where reliability and safety are paramount. As the number of fires grows and fire seasons extend, the demand for resources and cost-effective firefighting solutions is more pressing than ever.

Rotor has collaborated with the firefighting community over the past several years to develop the R550X. This aircraft fills a gap above small UAS currently in use, bringing the full payload capability of a Type 3 rotorcraft with no increase in pilot risk.

Benefits

Airspace integration

With Cloudpilot, which is available round the clock, the R550X can communicate with other air traffic like a traditional crewed helicopter, allowing for seamless integration into FTA / TFR environments.

Night and DVE operation

Multiple cameras, LIDAR, and thermal imaging allow high situational awareness at night and in degraded visual environments (DVE), including thermal inversions and prolonged periods of smoke.

Multi-mission reliability

The R550X can be used year-round in a variety of profiles, helping maintain overall operating budgets when not fighting active wildfires. And because it’s based on a type-certified helicopter, reliability and availability are superior to any drone alternative.

Live data anywhere

Connected aircraft can feed data back to the ground and allow incident command and ground fire crews to access cloud-based information on laptops and phones in real-time for improved situational awareness.

Research

In 2021, Rotor joined an MIT industry collaboration to research technology needs in helicopter aerial work. We spent over 150 hours interviewing hundreds of helicopter fleet operators, helicopter pilots, and customers of helicopter services around the world. Our goal was to learn what the industry needed from engineers and companies developing new technology, and we published our findings in a public report.

Explore more missions

Agriculture

The R550X fits seamlessly into existing helicopter spray operations, while providing immediate cost and productivity benefits.

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Offshore

Deliver cargo to offshore assets 24 hours a day for considerably less than multi-engine turbine helicopter costs. Keep flight crews safe and preserve larger aircraft for personnel transport.

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Transform the  way you fly