helicopter is an aircraft powered by two propellers. The word helicopter derives from the French hélicoptère from helix and pteron which are Greek words that mean propeller and wing respectively.

What is a helicopter?

A helicopter is an aircraft powered by two propellers , one front and one rear. They are used for civil or military activities, for transport, rescue, surveillance or attack . It was invented by the Ukrainian Igor Sikorsky.

  • Definition
  • What is it for
  • Helicopter Features
  • Story
  • Who Invented the Helicopter
  • Types
  • Parties
  • How does it work
  • Maintenance
  • How high does a helicopter fly
  • Examples


helicopter is an aircraft with two propellers , one at the top for horizontal rotation and a small one at the back that rotates the tail of the same.


What is it for

Helicopters serve as a safe means of transport, they are used as ambulances, for military or police operations, as a means of work for firefighters, or for heavy or light loads, for surveillance and rescue of the injured .

Helicopter Features

The main characteristics of the helicopter are:

  • You can land and clear vertically, that is, in a parking lot, on a building or on a mountain, without the need for a runway.
  • It can fly slowly or remain stationary in the air,
  • It has the ability to move in all directions, unlike the plane that only moves forward.
  • It is more complicated to fly and to build.
  • It has two propellers.
  • There are civilian and military helicopters.


By the 400s BC, the Chinese developed a toy called a flying top, which was made up of a propeller that rotated at the end of a rod.

In 1927 a huge device called the Gyroplane rose into the air piloted by a man.

Leonardo da Vinci , for the year 1940, drew and designed sketches of what would be the first flying artifact with a motor.

On February 21, 1920, the Argentine Raúl Pateras de Pescara made the first takeoff and landing of a helicopter and patented his design with counter-rotating blades in Spain . This Argentine inventor was also the first to use autorotation for safe landings. They were used during World War II .

Next, the Spanish engineer Juan de la Cierva invented an aircraft that took off with a jump technique, almost vertically.

The first piloted and powered helicopter was invented by the Slovakian Jan Bahyl .

In 1930, the Italian d´Ascanio, developed a twin-engine helicopter, that is, with two engines. That traveled 1 km of distance, up to 15 meters high, for 10 minutes, setting records for the time.

In Germany for the year 1937, a twin-engine helicopter called Focke Wulf 61 was created, which flew at a speed of 122 km / h and a height of 3427 meters.

In 1943, Igor Sikorsky manufactured the first chain-produced, flight-controllable helicopter.

In 1946, the Bell 47 designed by Arthur Young was the first helicopter used for civilian personnel in the United States .

In the 20th century, great fuel and engine improvements were made , for the development of faster and higher flying helicopters.

Who Invented the Helicopter

Helicopters were invented by Igor Sikorsky , an engineer born in Ukraine in 1889, who carried out his first helicopter projects in 1909. His VS-300 model has the structural characteristics of the helicopters used today.


Civil helicopters:

  • Police: generally used in large cities, useful for surveillance, transfers, and road or border control.
  • Ambulance: used to rescue the wounded, to transport hospitalized patients, to provide first aid.
  • Cargo: they are large and powerful helicopters, to transport light or heavy materials.
  • Rescue: to save people or animals in the forest, sea or mountainous areas.
  • Firefighting: they are like fire trucks but work from the air to put out forest or infrastructure fires.
  • Transportation of people: to transport or move civilian personnel.

Military helicopters:

  • Attack or combat: it contains within it a great diversity of weapons.
  • Troop transport: as its name implies, it is used to move soldiers to places
  • Light or heavy transport.
  • Medical: to transport wounded soldiers and provide first aid inside it.
  • Unmanned: it does not transport humans on board, it uses state-of-the-art technology and is used to recognize territories or spy.


  • Upper rotor: used to raise, lower, advance, reverse and support the helicopter. This upper rotor also has its parts: head, main shaft, two blades, swash plate and flybar system.
  • Posterior propeller: used to rotate the tail to the right and left.
  • Body: part where the mechanisms are.
  • Cockpit: it is a cubicle from where the pilot manages the aircraft.
  • Control rudder pedal : foot operated pedal to steer the rudder.
  • Landing skid: metallic device activated for landing.
  • Fin: mechanism to deflect or stabilize the helicopter.
  • Joystick: to take control of the aircraft.
  • Fuselage: part that helps maintain the helicopter’s posture during flight.
  • Oscillating plate: helps support during landing.
  • Rotor vane: serves for propulsion and sustains flight.
  • Fuel inlet duct: it is a hole to fill the fuel tank.
  • Steering synchronizer cable: they are iron wires to handle the aircraft.
  • Anti-torque rotor: it is an auxiliary of the lift and propulsion.
  • Rear rotor: for stability in the air, it also prevents the body from rotating.
  • Transmitter: radio control transmitter.
  • Tail: thin rear part of the fuselage.
  • Rotor hub : central part for propulsion and lift.
  • Receiver: device that transmits mechanisms.
  • Motor and battery.

How does it work

The helicopter is lifted through motorized rotors that rotate on their vertical axis on a fuselage. The rotor is attached to the fuselage by gears that reduce speed. In addition, it has a small thruster on the tail of the helicopter to push the tail from one side to the other horizontally allowing the aircraft to turn.


  • Scheduled: it is carried out with a revision plan and certain spare parts.
  • Not programmed: to detect faults that endanger the flight of the aircraft.
  • Review of transit inspections of tires, oil and authority structure was made generally before each flight.
  • Daily check : checked 20 minutes after the engines are switched off.
  • 48 hour review: the review is performed at this interval. More in-depth inspection of fluids, brakes and wheels, fuselage, wings and cockpit.
  • Time limit check : the engine is checked according to the number of flight hours.
  • Review of the operating limit cycle: they depend on the flight cycles, the landing gear, the engine, the blades of the turbines are reviewed.

How high does a helicopter fly

There are helicopters that fly where there is no oxygen, like the helicopter that reached the top of Everest to carry out a rescue in 2017, reached 8850 meters. The height record was in 1972 and was 12,442 meters high. But generally they rise to 5000 meters in height.


  • Sikorsky S-51 or VS-327
  • Bell 212
  • Sikorsky S-61
  • Sikorsky S-76 Spirit
  • Robinson R22Denel AH-2 Rooivalk
  • Mil Mi-26
  • Boeing AH-64 Apache
  • Bell AH-1Z Viper
  • Enstrom F-28
  • GEN H-4
  • Westland 30
  • Schweizer 300
  • Kamov Ka-52 or Alligator
  • Eurocopter EC665 Tiger
  • Hal Light Combat Helicopter

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