Elevated and Rooftop Helipads and Heliports

Aluminium Offshore Pte Ltd is a world leader in helipad and helideck design and manufacture and we have completed over 500 installations worldwide since 1988.

We design and build helipads for

  • commercial and residential buildings
  • government installations
  • hospitals
  • anywhere else you need a helipad
110m x 34m twin helipad at the Hong Kong Ferry Terminal – World’s largest heliport
Helipad on the rooftop of the 18 storeys high Ambani Seawind Residence, Mumbai
36m circular helipad on the Telekom Malaysia Building – Kuala Lumpur
Marine grade, corrosion resistant aluminium helipad at the waterfront of Thursday Island Hospital – Queensland

The design of these helipads usually follow these codes and standards:

  • Civil Aviation Code of the country of installation
  • International Civil Aviation Organization (‘ICAO’) Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs)
  • CAP1264 (the recently published UK “standards for helicopter landing areas at hospitals” Feb 2016)
  •  Annex 14 (Volume II Heliports Third edition July 2009) and the Heliport Manual (9261-AN903-Third Edition 1995) and appendices.

The ICAO SARPs prescribe the helipad physical characteristics, obstacle control criteria, visual aids requirements and guidance on elements such as site selection and structural design. ICAO and European standards are generally somewhat more stringent than the US FAA requirements.

We have been designing and building helipads for over 27 years and have numerous ‘world firsts’ in our track record. We are pioneers in helipad safety and were the first company in the world to introduce and build the concept of passive fire suppression (originally known as the ‘Astech’ fire retardant helideck and later as the XE Enhanced Safety™ helideck).  We were also the first to introduce aluminium rooftop helipads to Australia/NZ with the first safety helipad being installed at Mater Hospital in the year 2000.

View our hospital helipad/hospital helideck/healthcare helipad track records for more detail

Together with the all-aluminium helipad, we are able to supply the complete helipad package including:

Aluminium support structure

Aluminium platforms, ramps and stairs

Helipad fire-fighting system

Helipad lighting system

Vibration mounts/isolators

Enhanced Safety™
(Passive Fire Retarding) Helideck

Consider the safety case relating to a crash situation and the potential free release of fuel from the helicopter’s fuel tanks. Current helicopters have a longer range over older models and therefore carry more fuel. A 1000l fuel discharge which catches fire is difficult to contain and can be expected to make its way down the building pipes, with potentially disastrous consequences. Anyone who has witnessed a jet fuel fire knows how much energy these high octane fuels can release!

Live fire test conducted by Aluminium Offshore shows flames produced by jet fuel during a crash scenario reaching up to 7m in height

The XE Enhanced Safety™ helipad has a patented, passive fire suppression system which ensures that any fuel discharge is extinguished within the helideck and drained away as unburnt fuel, which can be safely collected at a remote location. This system is extremely effective and can automatically extinguish fires on the pad within seconds, without the use of active fire-fighting agents.

The XE Enhanced Safety™ helipad has been constantly improved and these successive versions have been rigorously tested with multiple fire tests from 1989 to 2016 in the presence of Det Norske Veritas, Lloyds Register, the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority, International Civil Aviation Authority, ABS, various helicopter operators and manufacturers, public safety groups, offshore safety crews, pilots and user bodies. The latest version of the deck is the MkIII.

This model of helipad does not need foam or other extinguishing agents to deal with a fire on its surface and water is sufficient to extinguish the residual fire vapour burn after the bulk of the fuel has been drained off. In public fire tests on this helideck (Mk II) carried out in 2008, a 450l jet fuel fire was controlled in the following times:

  • Purely passive, i.e no intervention by fire-fighting agents: under 90 seconds
  • Using a water DIFFS unit: under 4 seconds

A more recent public fire test was carried out on the latest MK III version of the Enhanced Safety™ deck in July 2016, attended by, among others, representatives from Statoil , DNV and ABS. The results were even more impressive:

  • Purely passive, i.e no intervention by fire-fighting agents: fire extinguished completely within three seconds
  • Using a water DIFFS unit: instantaneous extinguishing

These test results make the water DIFFS unit almost superfluous.

XE Enhanced Safety™ Mark III

UKCAA CAP1264 allows installations with an XE Enhanced Safety™ helipad to use water instead of foam for the DIFFS systems. This means a huge reduction in cost, complexity, testing, maintenance and renewals. (reference: 1st edition, ch 5, para 5.9)