Helitak Announces Multi-Tank Deal with Rotak Helicopter Services

Helitak Firefighting Equipment, an Australian-based aerial firefighting tank manufacturer, announced on March 9th, 2024, the signing of a multi-tank contract with Alaska-based Rotak Helicopter Services.

The deal will see Rotak, an aerial firefighting helicopter operator receive Additional FT-11K tanks capable of holding 2905 gallons of water, that will be fitted to the company’s growing fleet of CH-47 helicopters in the coming months, ready for service in the 2024 fire season in the United States.

The FT-11K tank was designed in 2022 and manufactured in 2023 where it was shipped to the United States for rigorous testing before being granted an FAA STC in January of 2024. The FT-11K is the largest tank in the Helitak range, which when fitted with the HP-10000 Hover Fill Pump, is capable of loading over 2900 gallons of water in under 60 seconds, allowing the aircraft to drop more water in less time than many other aircraft in the industry, leading to faster fills and more water on each fire that Rotak Helicopter Services fight.

“We are ecstatic to receive the ongoing support from Rotak for additional FT11k Tanks as they expand their CH-47 fleet of aircraft. Rotak, who was both our launch customer for the tank and our development partner during certification. We have worked extensively with the Rotak team during development and this commitment solidifies the trust that our customer has in our tanks and the support we provide to our customers, leading to continued long-term business,” said Helitak CEO Jason Schellaars.

The FT-11K is the most innovative and robust product to enter the market for the CH-47, with its retractable design, the FT-11K can be fitted to any CH-47 with no modification needed to the landing gear or external structure of the aircraft, also not requiring the use of any internal space to carry water or retardant.

The 2905-gallon capacity tank is now the only tank in the marketplace capable of carrying over 2500 gallons of water or retardant, the current maximum of tanks already available. The FT-11k CH-47 tank is available with both hydraulic and electric pump fill options and can be fitted and removed from an aircraft in 30 minutes. The tank design also allows it to be transported internally within the CH-47 airframe for longer ferry flight. This was recently demonstrated at HeliExpo when the tank arrived in the aircraft and quickly removed and fitted once the aircraft was positioned for display.

“We have been involved with the FT-11K tank design and development since its inception and we are excited to continue our relationship with Helitak with the acquisition of additional tanks for our growing fleet of CH-47 Chinook aircraft. Helitak has proven to be a partner that listens to operators and continues to develop products that help us deliver a service to the customer that exceeds their expectations,” said Chris Maynard, Director of Business Development for Rotak Helicopter Services.

The FT-11K tank features a water carrying capacity of 2905 US gallons/11000 liters that can be dropped on a fire in stages or in a single drop using the included Helitak Fire Tank controller (FTC) to disperse the load. The FT-11K can also take a 132-gallon/500-liter load of foam retardant if needed.

Full Feature List of the FT-11K

Tank Capacity: 2905G/11000L

Tank Empty Weight:   2030lbs/880kg

Tank Full Weight: 26455lbs/12000kg

Tank Height: 14”/36cm

Foam Retardant Capacity: 132G/500L

Power Requirements: 40Kva 110Vac 3 Phase/50Amps 28Vdc 30 Amps

Hover Fill Pump Time: 2641G/10000 Liters Per Minute

About Helitak Firefighting Equipment

Helitak Firefighting Equipment is an award-winning world leader in developing external tank solutions for the aerial firefighting industry, founded by Jason Schellaars, an engineer and helicopter pilot who believed it was possible to improve on tanks currently available to the industry. Helitak continues to develop new products and improve the industry’s lightest and most efficient tanks. you can learn more about Helitak by visiting www.helitak.com.au

About Rotak Helicopter Services

ROTAK Helicopter Services is an Alaskan-based global helicopter operator. ROTAK specializes in precision external load utility operations. Focused on complex aerial construction to disaster relief and wildfire suppression. ROTAK’s global operations, including operating in all types of extreme terrain and weather environments from Alaska’s North Slope to Antarctica. ROTAK operates CH-47D CHINOOK and Kaman K-1200 KMAX helicopters.  www.rotakheli.com

AerialFire Staff
AerialFire Staff
AerialFire Magazine strives to provide you with breaking aerial firefighting industry news and information.

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