Rotorcraft Wire Strike

Rotorcraft operate at low altitudes which put them at risk to strike wires from many sources. Rotorcraft accidents tied to wire strikes have shown that the aircraft is damaged significantly and the accident often is fatal. The Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA’s) Rotorcraft Directorate has approved research to attempt to reduce the wire strike accidents for rotorcraft. Wire strikes often occur in VFR conditions with clear, sunny days, in these conditions, wire can be difficult to see. There are wire cutters on larger rotorcraft but not on smaller, lighter rotorcraft because they often are flying to slow to allow the cutters to work effectively. The FAA has developed a research program that looks at several areas that could potentially reduce wire strikes on rotorcraft and is currently Phase 1 with PEGASAS. The first is to develop a mechanical wire cutter for the lighter aircraft that would assist in the cutting of cables. The second is to determine the feasibility of developing a sensor package capable of detecting all potential wires and alerting the pilot of a pending strike. The third is to determine the feasibility of working with an Electronic Flight Bag manufacturer to include a wire database that could alert a pilot of a pending wire strike.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $625707
    • Contract Numbers:





    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Federal Aviation Administration

      William J. Hughes Technical Center, Atlantic City International Airport
      Atlantic City, NJ  United States  08405
    • Project Managers:

      Stadtmueller, Traci

    • Performing Organizations:

      Georgia Institute of Technology, School of Aerospace Engineering

      270 Ferst Drive
      Atlanta, GA  United States  30332

      Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne

      105 W University Boulevard
      Melbourne, FL  United States  32901-

      Iowa State University, Ames

      Bridge Engineering Center
      2711 South Loop Drive, Suite 4700
      Ames, Iowa  United States  50010-8664
    • Principal Investigators:

      Mavris, Dimitri

      Eisenmann, David

      Carstens, Deborah

    • Start Date: 20180830
    • Expected Completion Date: 20230630
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01742337
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Partnership to Enhance General Aviation Safety, Accessibility and Sustainability
    • Contract Numbers: 12-C-GA-GIT-029, 12-C-GA-FIT-033, 12-C-GA-GIT-040, 12-C-GA-ISU-036
    • Files: RIP, USDOT
    • Created Date: Jun 12 2020 4:15PM