'Whole Aircraft' Parachutes: At prices from $7000, Ballistic Parachutes are being fitted to increasing numbers of aircraft in Australia and New Zealand and are likely to become mandatory for commercial ops in Microlights. 'BRS' chutes are the only ballistic chutes with an approved repack station in NZ.
In an emergency BRS chutes can lower the whole aircraft with up to six passengers to the ground, and many lives have been saved worldwide.
The most common reasons for activating a chute are loss of control in unintended IMC, failure of a critical component, or engine failure over un-landable terrain.
The driving factor to having a chute installed is often that the pilot's partner wants an insurance policy that can save their partner's life, rather than just delivering a cheque after the event... "It's not about the plane."
Installation: Ballistic 'Whole aircraft' parachutes are safety critical devices operating in a difficult environment. They must be installed correctly so that they do not activate accidently, and must also be able to remain untouched for up to six years and then deploy with a high degree of certainty within 0.1 seconds when needed. When you need it to work, you really do need it to work. Leading Edge Aviation are able to fit the parachute themselves, or advise the owner or their engineer on fitting.
Deployment to ensure a safe water landing
Aircraft Types: Systems are available for many types of LSA and Microlight, and STCs have been issued for installation in a number of certified GA aircraft including Cessna 172, Cessna 182, and Vans RV, Cirrus.
Repacking: To ensure certainty of operation when required, the parachutes must be inspected and repacked at a maximum of six years. Before sending a chute for repacking, please contact the repack centre for instructions. Send the chute only... do NOT send rocket motors, they are prohibited for normal courier / freight transport.
Rockets: Are good for 12 years, and can be separated from the parachute before it is sent for repacking. Expired rockets should not be set off, as they are powerful and will have a dangerously unpredictable flight path without a parachute attached for stability. Contact the repack centre for disposal instructions.
Repack Facilities: There are three repacking facilities worldwide authorised to service BRS parachutes:
USA: Ballistic Recovery Systems, BRS Aerospace, 380 Airport Rd, South St Paul, MN, USA.
Germany: Bernd Vögeli, Industriestraße 2, D-67346 Speyer, Germany.
New Zealand/Australia: Leading Edge Aviation, West Auckland Airport Parakai 0840.
Bryn Lockie, Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer, has been factory trained in the USA in the theory and practice of ballistic parachute operation and servicing, and is rated to carry out this work.
For more information: Email for unmounting and shipping instructions and pricing details. Please advise unit type and age, aircraft type and registration where available.
For further information, contact Bryn Lockie:
New Zealand - Ph (09) 973 5119. Email: info@LEAV8.com
- Ph (02) 8355 7009. Email: info@BRSAustralia.com
BBC webpage article:
chute, Ultra Light Parachute, S