Hontek Photo Gallery: AAAA Materiel Readiness AWARD

February 11, 2010, Lieutenant General James Pillsbury congratulates Mr. and Mrs. Hong on Hontek’ s winning of the 2009 AAAA Material Readiness Award for Contributions by a Small Business.

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Lieutenant General James Pillsbury with (left to right) Jeff Hong, Joanne Hong, Tom O’Connor, Shek Hong and Andrea Hong.

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Utility Helicopter Project Manager Colonel Neil Thurgood and Mrs. Thurgood (center) celebrated with (left to right) Shek Hong, James Metzger, Joanne Hong, Lt. Col Pete Smart and Tom O’Connor.

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The UHPMO MOD team who worked very hard to bring the coated blades to the troops in 2008: Marshall Young (left), LTC Pete Smart (retired, 2nd from left), and Jim Metzger (right), with Shek Hong and Tom O’Connor.

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The happy reunion of the 2008 team members:  Sal Bordonaro (president, Kaman, 2nd from left), Marshall Young, Tom O’Connor, Jim Metzger and the Hongs. 
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Shek Hong  received the Award from Major General James Myles, Commanding General, US Army Aviation and Missile Command and Lieutenant General James Pillsbury, Deputy Commanding General, US Army Materiel Command

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Kaman Aerospace Executives (Sal Bordonaro, president, 2nd from right, and Mark Tattershall, Director, Marketing & Business Development), celebrate with the Hongs (left to right: Jeff, Shek, Joanne and Andrea). Kaman did the spraying of the coated blades for the deployment.

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Afghanistan Deployment 11/2008- 11/2009

In January, 2010, Colonel Ron Lewis, former Commander of 159th Combat Aviation Brigade, 101st Airborne Division and Shek Hong re-united at the  Association of the United States Army Aviation 2010 Symposium in  Washington, D.C.  The 159th CAB was the first unit to fly the new UH-60M, equipped with Hontek-coated main rotor blades. After 31,000 flight hours in Afghanistan with 30 UH-60M and 20 UH-60A/L, the unit achieved zero main rotor blade replacement, a new historical record.  In comparison, prior year deployment of another unit experienced 26% blade replacement rate without Hontek-coated blades.

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In April 2010, Shek Hong conducted a Hontek Repair Training session at Ft. Hood Army Reset Depot, Texas.  We witnessed the conditions of the used blades returned from Afghanistan after one-year of service (about 600-700 flight hours) in the harsh sandy environments.  The following photo shows the condition of the blades as received at Ft. Hood Army Reset Depot.  The used blades required minor repairs because the soldiers had done excellent field repairs while in Afghanistan.

After about four hours, four blades were repaired in the Repair Training session. The dedication of the aircraft maintainers was very impressive and reassuring. 

The four repaired coated blades were ready to be recycled back to active Army inventory for future active duty use.  In this we have witnessed for the second time that Hontek-coated blades is able to provide “unlimited blade life” if properly maintained with Hontek Repair Kits. 


At the 2007 Army Aviation Association of America (AAAA) Convention, Shek Hong reviewed the Hontek-coated Black Hawk blade on display with Major General James Pillsbury.  General Pillsbury was instrumental in providing funding and support for the fielding of the coated blades.  

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At the 2007 AAAA Convention, Shek Hong explained the benefits of Hontek-coated rotor blades to Major General Pillsbury and  the Honorable Claude Bolton, Jr. - Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology (right).

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At the 2007 AAAA Convention, Shek, Joanne and Jeff Hong took a photo before a Black Hawk helicopter with Mr. Andy Ksepka, Deputy Project Manager for the Army’s UH-60 Project Management Office. Mr. Ksepka led UHPMO MOD group’s efforts to bring the coated blades to the troops.  

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In April, 2007 members of the Virginia Army National Guard, Sikorsky team and Shek Hong re-united in Richmond, Virginia after the unit returned from the one-year deployment in Iraq.  The Virginia Unit was the first Army unit to deploy with Hontek-coated blades on UH-60A/L. They flew two aircraft with Hontek-coated blades for over 1,400 hours, establishing the first historical record of zero main rotor blade replacements.  The unit also flew 18 other UH-60A/L aircraft, and documented that the main blades required 30% replacement rate without Hontek coatings. 

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The photo shows two Virginia Guard soldiers conducted repair on coated blades without the labor-intensive blade removal.

The following photos show that even with sever coating damages, the aircraft can continue to fly safely and the coating damages can be repaired very quickly.  An example was Black Hawk aircraft #834.  It participated in a water rescue operation over several days in Iraq in 2006.  The heavy water erosion caused coating damages, especially on the outboard sections.   With Hontek repair kits, the damaged coatings were quickly restored to like-new conditions.  The aircraft continued to fly for a total of 684 hours and returned home in excellent condition. 

The photo below shows the as-received condition of the blade on Black Hawk #834 when it was inspected at Sikorsky on 9-18-2007.  The gray area at the outboard tip was just a minor topcoat damage. The gray basecoat was still intact. The multiple repairs on the blades over the one year period did not cause excessive weight build-up. The unit reported no track and balance issues with the repairs.  The Army concluded that Hontek-coated blades have the potential to offer “unlimited blade life” against erosion damages if properly maintained with Hontek repair kits.

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