This website uses cookies
More information
Business Air News Bulletin
Business Air News Bulletin
The monthly news publication for aviation professionals.

Why visit ACE ’24?

Related background information from the Handbook...

Ultimate Heli

Bell 412

Kaman K-MAX

BAN's World Gazetteer

South Africa
The monthly news publication for aviation professionals.

Request your printed copy

Ultimate Heli supports discovery of Shackleton’s Endurance
Ultimate Heli supported the team that found one of the most remote, undiscovered shipwrecks 107 years after it sank. Its helicopters operated passenger and heavy underslung flights in and around the Weddell Sea.
On the 100th anniversary of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s death, Ultimate Heli has been supporting the expedition that found Endurance.
Read this story in our April 2022 printed issue.

South Africa-based rotary operator Ultimate Heli has been providing helicopter support services to the Endurance 22 Expedition as it tried to locate, survey and film the wreck of Endurance, the lost ship of polar explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton.

Ultimate Heli deployed one Bell 412EP helicopter and a contracted Kaman K-Max specialised underslung load helicopter. The helicopters have been operating passenger and heavy lift underslung flights from icebreaking polar supply and research ship SA Agulhas II, in and around the Weddell Sea in Antarctica. They provided aerial support that assisted in moving crews and transporting ice camps on the frozen sea ice, allowing drilling through the thick sea ice and the deployment of Saab Sabertooth hybrid underwater vehicles at a distance from the support vessel.

“We are immensely proud to participate in this once in a life time expedition,” says CEO Shaun Roseveare. “Our helicopters and crews that supported this operation operated in harsh flying conditions over decreasing sub zero temperatures. It is a tremendous achievement by everyone involved and we wish the team safe sailing back to Cape Town.

“This is our eighth consecutive Antarctica season. In addition to providing annual helicopter support to various national Antarctica programmes, we are proud to participate in this once in a life time expedition. Our ability to deploy two specialist helicopter types and crews on this unique expedition is a culmination of our years and years of experience in Antarctica.”

The expedition team includes leading polar scientists who are conducting a range of studies of the ice and climate change related matters, advancing knowledge of the Antarctic environment and global warming. These include measuring and recording the sea-ice conditions in order to develop a system that will, in time, provide continuous and automatic data of sea-ice conditions in the Antarctic, where currently very limited information exists.

Mission leader and veteran polar geographer Dr John Shears described the moment cameras landed on the ship’s name as jaw-dropping. "The discovery of the wreck is an incredible achievement,” he says. “We have successfully completed the world’s most difficult shipwreck search, battling constantly shifting sea-ice, blizzards, and temperatures dropping down to -18C. We have achieved what many people said was impossible.”

Other News
Black Tusk augments K-MAX fleet
April 26, 2024
A second K-MAX helicopter has been delivered to the utility operator for its various external lift missions in and around Squamish, BC in Canada.
Blackcomb hooked by Onboard for Canadian launch
March 2, 2024
Blackcomb Helicopters is going to be the Canadian launch customer for the forthcoming medium Bell HEC dual cargo hook system from Onboard Systems.
Abu Dhabi Aviation signs CSF agreement with Bell
February 28, 2024
As an authorised Bell customer service facility, ADA will provide service for Bell 212, 412 and the Subaru Bell 412EPX commercial aircraft. It will also support a regional demo tour of the Subaru Bell 412EPX.