Temora Aviation Museum is eagerly anticipating a visit from the Sky-crane known as “SHANIA” at its flying days this weekend.
The CH-54 Sky-crane Helitanker is the most versatile, powerful, and cost effective aerial firefighter in the world. Since certification in 1992, the helitanker has seen worldwide service, fighting fires in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Borneo, Italy, Greece, France, Turkey, and Australia. The helitankers are leased worldwide to organisations, companies, and Federal Agencies for either short-term or longer term use in Fire Suppression, Civil Protection, Heavy Lift Construction, and Timber Harvesting. Australia has contracted Helitanker services during every fire season since November 1997.
The helitankers are heavy vertical lift helicopters fitted with high capacity belly tanks. The microprocessor controlled tank system is capable of delivering multiple drops. The belly tank doors offer a range of options for controlling coverage levels of the suppressant delivered to the ground. The tank is fitted with a fast self-fill snorkel that allows it to hover-fill from a variety of water sources. The helitankers are also fitted with a snorkel device that allows the helitanker to fill from salt-water sources during forward flight.
•   The Sky-crane can be fitted with a 2,650-gallon (10,000 litres) fixed retardant tank to assist in the control of bushfires, and it has acquitted itself admirably in this role.
•   It has a lift capacity of 25,000 lbs (12.5 tons) at sea level
•   A flexible hose snorkel features a high pressure impeller and can draw water from any water source 18 inches (45 cm) or deeper.
•   The patented ram scoop hydrofoil allows the Helitanker to refill from fresh water and sea water sources in less than 45 seconds.
•   Water tank capacity is 7,500 litres
•   Length: 27.23m
•   Height 7.82m
“Shania” will arrive at the Museum on Saturday 17th February for display during the Museum flying day programme. A large crowd is expected to come out and see the magnificent machine up close. It will depart Temora on Sunday afternoon.
Don’t miss this unique opportunity to see a Sky-crane up close.