|Role||Light utility and trainer helicopter|
|Manufacturer||Robinson Helicopter Company|
|Designer||Frank D. Robinson|
|First flight||March 31, 1990|
|Unit cost||from US$425,000 (2011)|
|Developed from||Robinson R22|
|Developed into||Robinson R66|
The Robinson R44 is a four-seat light helicopter produced by the Robinson Helicopter Company since 1992. Based on the company's two-place Robinson R22, the R44 features hydraulically-assisted flight controls. The R44 was first flown on 31 March 1990, and received FAA certification in December 1992, with the first delivery in February 1993.
Design and development 
The R44 is a single-engined helicopter with a semi-rigid two-bladed main rotor and a two-bladed tail rotor and a skid landing gear. It has an enclosed cabin with two rows of side-by-side seating for a pilot and three passengers. Tail rotor direction of rotation on the R44 is reversed compared to the R22 for improved yaw control authority. On the R44 the advancing blade is on the bottom.
Designed during the 1980s by Frank Robinson and his staff of engineers, the R44 first flew on March 31, 1990. The R44 Astro was awarded an FAA Type Certificate in December 1992, with the first deliveries taking place in January 1993. In January 2000, Robinson introduced the Raven with hydraulically-assisted controls and adjustable pedals. In July 2002, Robinson introduced the Raven II featuring a more powerful, fuel-injected engine and wider blades, allowing a higher gross weight and improved altitude performance.
In 1997, a Robinson R44 was piloted by Jennifer Murray for the first helicopter circumnavigation of the world by a woman, covering a distance of 36,000 miles in 97 days. Chilean president Sebastián Piñera owns one of these copters, and has made several public appearances flying it. Since 2002, Belgian Prince Philippe has flown a red R44 for personal leisure, with the unique registry code "OO-PFB", which stands for "Prins Filip België". British singer Jay Kay also owns an R44 (registry code G-JKAY), which he pilots in the music video to the song White Knuckle Ride.
Civilian Operators 
The aircraft is operated by many private individuals, companies and flying clubs.
Police Operators 
Military operators 
Accidents and incidents 
An amateur database reported a total of 89 fatal accidents between July 1993 and June 2010 from a total of 296 incidents involving the Robinson R44.
There have been 39 R44 low-impact crashes across the globe as of April 18, 2013 that have resulted in a post-crash fire. According to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) reports, 74 people have died and 15 people have been injured. 
Robinson Helicopter Company first issued R44 Service Bulletin SB-78 on December 20, 2010 requiring R44 helicopters with all-aluminum fuel tanks to be retrofitted with bladder-type tanks, using Robinson's $6800 field kit, as soon as practical but no later than December 31, 2014. The kit is designed to "improve the R44's fuel system's resistance to a post-accident fuel leak." Robinson issued a revised SB-78A on February 21, 2012, moving up the compliance date by a year, to December 31, 2013. On September 28, 2012, the company issued its latest revision of the bulletin, SB-78B, moving up the compliance date to April 30, 2013. 
Specifications (R44 Raven II) 
Data from Robinson R44 Raven II Pilot's Operating Handbook and FAA approved rotorcraft flight manual, dated June 13, 2005.
- Crew: one or two pilots
- Capacity: four, including pilot
- Payload: 800 lb (408 kg)
- Length: 459" (9.0 m)
- Rotor diameter: 33 ft (10.1 m)
- Tail rotor diameter: 4 ft 10 in (1.5 m)
- Height: 10 ft 9 in (3.3 m)
- Empty weight: 1,450 lb (657.7 kg)
- Loaded weight: 2,500 lb (1,134 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × Lycoming IO-540-AE1A5 6 cylinder, flat engine with fuel injection, 245 bhp (183 kW)
- Fuel: 100 low lead (100LL) fuel or 100/130.
- Main tank capacity: 31.6 US gallons (120 liters)
- Main tank usable fuel: 30.6 US gallons (116 liters)
- Auxiliary tank capacity: 18.5 US gallons (70 liters)
- Auxiliary tank usable fuel: 18.3 US gallons (69 liters)
- Maximum speed: 130 kn (240 km/h; 150 mph)
- Cruise speed: 110 kn (200 km/h; 130 mph)
- Range: 300 nmi (560 km; 350 mi)
- Altitude restrictions: 14,000 ft (4,300 m) density altitude or 9,000 ft (2,700 m) above ground level in order to be able to reach ground within 5 minutes in case of fire.
See also 
- Related development
- Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
- "Flying prince Philip again aggravates inhabitants of Brussels". Het Belang Van Limburg. 7-4-2011. Retrieved 11 August 2011.
- "PNP gets 3 Raven choppers for anti-crime operations". GMA News. Retrieved 11 February 2010.
- "AirspaceTechnology R44". © 2011 AirSpaceTechnology. Retrieved 2013-8-01.
- "World Air Forces 2013". Flightglobal Insight. 2013. Retrieved 17 March 2013.
- "Robinson R-44 Clipper". Retrieved 10-January-2013.
- "Lebanese Army Takes Delivery of Two More Robinsons". RHC media. Retrieved 10-January-2013.
- "R44 Accident Database". Griffin Helicopters. Retrieved 2012-01-20.
- R44 low-impact crashes resulting in a post-crash fire "R44 low-impact crashes resulting in a post-crash fire".
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Robinson R44|
- Robinson Helicopter Company website
- Robinson Helicopters Owners Group
- Robinson R44 Raven I Performance, Specification and Photos
- Robinson R44 Raven II Performance, Specification and Photos
- R44 Raven I owner's review
- European Aviation Safety Agency - Type Certificate Data Sheet - R44 and R44 II[dead link]