Helicopters are the only aircraft that can move forward, backward, side-to-side, and hover. They also allow you to take-off and land with much less space. This makes them the perfect vehicles for sight-seeing, allowing you to maneuver into smaller or more difficult to reach locations and hover over beautiful sights for that perfect picture. Keep reading to learn more interesting facts about helicopters and helicopter flight.
The Basics of Controlling a Helicopter
In order to fly a helicopter, the pilot must use three main controls, the collective pitch, the cyclic pitch, and the tail rotor control. In addition, the pilot also uses a throttle control, which is mounted directly onto the collective pitch. The collective pitch is used to control the angle of the main rotor blades. By doing this, the pilot can control the lift created by the blades and move the helicopter up or down. The throttle controls the speed of the blades. The cyclic controls which direction the helicopter flies, forward, rearward, left, or right. Finally, the tail rotor control allows the pilot to turn the helicopter left or right. Obviously it is more complicated than just these basics, but this gives you the general idea!
Image taken from Connecticut History
The History of Helicopters
- Toy helicopters, made from bamboo, have existed since as far back as 400 BC.
- A French writer named Ponton D’Amecourt was the first person to use the word helicopter in 1863.
- Paul Cornu invented the first piloted helicopter in 1907, but his design was not successful.
- In 1938 the first successful helicopter was made by Igor Sikorsky.
- Stanley Hiller flew the first helicopter across the United States in 1949.
- In 1982 two men flew around the world in a helicopter.
- On May 14, 2005 a helicopter landed on the summit of Mount Everest, the highest point on earth.
Interesting Helicopter Facts
- The fastest a helicopter has been flown is 248 miles per hour.
- The longest a helicopter has flown without landing is 2213 miles.
- The first person was saved by a helicopter in 1944 and since then helicopters have saved more than 3 million lives.
- Helicopters are the only aircraft that can move forward, backward, and side-to-side.
- Some nicknames for helicopters include “chopper,” “helo,” “copter,” “heli,” and “whirlybird.”
- Helicopters have many uses including tourism, search and rescue, medical transport, fighting fires, aerial photography, military activity, and more.
Want to learn more about helicopters first hand? Fly with Serenity Helicopters. Read below to find out what our guests have to say about their experiences.
“Best experience we ever had. I was afraid, but now prefer a helicopter over a plane any day. Mad Dog Mike was the best: professional, knowledgeable and an awesome attitude towards life. The whole organization and staff are fantastic. Will be back for sure. Thanks Serenity.” - Lee-AnnVan
“This tour was amazing. Whoever said flight food was terrible has never experienced a helicopter tour - if only we could travel everywhere in a helicopter. I'm scared of heights but this did not phase me in the helicopter, smooth and such an amazing experience. Fabulous company, would highly recommend.” - Katherineluke26
“This trip was good for the soul. The vastness of the canyon and the up close and personal delivery of it via the helicopter makes you realize what a small part of this world we are and appreciate the opportunity we all have to be a part of it. Thanks Serenity for an amazing experience!” - Lisa C
“The flight itself was absolutely stunning, our pilot Jim had a wonderful sense of humour which made the trip even easier, and was totally adept as a pilot. Felt very safe and the helicopter was very smooth. All in all a fabulous life thing to experience, one off the "tick" list.” - Shane95
“Just cannot recommend them enough! Professional, personal, reliable, and a good price! The scenery also helps! Helicopter was in fantastic condition, turbo fan Eurocopter! The trip, commentary, music and scenery was amazing! Stopped in Grand Canyon for a bite to eat, again fresh food, cold drinks, tidy, no rubbish, all cleared up, and away as if nobody had been there, leaving it for others to discover unspoiled! As they say in Las Vegas, 7 star they deserve it!” - jayrosss