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I'm at the house of a friend who I stay with often.  We have noticed for the last few years that the amount of helicopters flying over the area is strangely pronounced.  The last one we saw was using a search light.  I found how to identify large jets, but as of yet I have not had luck with helicopters.  I know this is not exactly UFOs, but do you know a good way to find out information about who helicopters are associated with??

Todd in Southwest Missouri

Sorry I was on vacation, a real vacation without intenet!

This site can help you identify a helicopter if you can get the registration off of it!  That's a little hard, I actually carry around small but powerful binoculars to help with identification of planes and helicopters (which are often mistaken for UFOs)

Here is a "cheat sheet" that NYC has

It's got the most basic helicopters for airports....

Here is some help from a friend, still basic stuff

Just want to add that many helicopters you can tell just by looking at the paint job or callsign (N number) Many police department copters will be painted blue and white, maybe have a shield on them, look quite a bit like a police car. Their callsign will end with PD (for police department). One of the KC police copters is N690PD. Here's a pic: http://southkansascityobserver.blogs...-choppers.html

Lifeline's almost all have LIFELINE or MEDICAL or a hospital name painted boldly on them. Callsigns end with LL or ME (medical emergency)

TV copters almost always have the news channel and logo all over em.


Here is another reply from a friend..........................

It's pretty much going to come down to familiarization with different makes and models of helicopters, as well as some knowledge of nearby military bases.

If this is something that interests you, it might be worthwhile to visit Wikipedia's helicopter articles.

I live near a Marine base, so the list of Marine aircraft is interesting:

The Marine's CH-53 Sea Stallion is a common sight in my skies:

Another, notably exotic aircraft is the V-22 Osprey:

If you live closer to an Army base, you might seeing the UH-60 Blackhawk and its variants:

Among civilian helicopters, the Bell 206 Jetranger is an extremely popular model:

It's often used for traffic reporting, police transport, and civilian transport (you'll need to get a good look at the markings, to see the difference between police and civilian uses).

The above models are common in the US. If you live in the UK, you'll want to familiarize yourself with Westland's products and your own armed forces aviation assets. In Italy, take a look at Augusta's product line.

There's a lot more to helicopter identification, but the above should get you started.


So, what military bases are nearby?  Airports?  That is a start. I am also told that helicopters and planes are easily identifiable on radar.  They look very different from each other.

SORRY for the long delay and hope this helps!


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