About us

Advanced VTOL Technologies (AVT) is an Australian owned company that has been providing specialist aerospace and defence engineering services since 1997.

Our background

A world leader in flight sciences and technology

AVT was founded in 1998 in Melbourne, Australia to provide consulting services to the Australian Defence Science and Technology (DST) Group. Whilst providing a broad range of specialist engineering consulting services, we also developed world-leading capability in helicopter-ship interface simulation and flight dynamics modelling.

Consulting services

Since its inception, we have provided many highly skilled personnel in the areas of aerospace engineering, software engineering and human factors. Support has been provided for operational analysis, helicopter dynamics, helicopter-ship dynamics, simulation fidelity assessment, human in the loop simulation, computer simulation graphics, software engineering, computational fluid dynamics, human factors research and experimental research.

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Helicopter-ship

Since January 1998, we have specialised in helicopter-ship dynamic interface simulation for the Australian Defence Force (ADF). The company has been solely responsible for the development and maintenance of the OnDeck simulation software and we have continuously developed the software to improve fidelity and the number of helicopter types modelled. We have provided analysis and modelling services to the ADF, Danish Navy, Swedish Navy, New Zealand Navy and NATO.

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Flight dynamics

Our core capability in flight dynamics includes modelling & simulation, control, performance, testing and data analysis. We have a sound working knowledge of complex simulation software having developed numerous flight dynamic models of aeroplanes, rockets, helicopters, UAVs and maritime platforms. We have extensive experience in aerodynamic load prediction, control system architecture, multi-body dynamics, CFD analysis, system identification, optimisation, flight data reconstruction and validation & verification techniques. Much of this work is underpinned by flight test involvement, including First of Class Flight Trials (FOCFT) and deck trials.

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Key people

Our directors

David Howe BEng (Aero), MEng (Aero)

Managing Director

David Howe completed his Bachelor of Aerospace Engineering at RMIT University in 1994 and a Masters in Aerospace Engineering in 1998 in the area of inverse aircraft loads estimation using optimisation and finite element modelling techniques. In 1994 David worked for ASTA Aircraft Services designing repairs for Boeing aircraft. During 1995, he performed air combat system modelling contract support for the Australian Defence Science and Technology Group (DST). Since 1997 David has worked with DST as a consultant engaged in high fidelity non linear dynamic modelling of helicopters on ships as well as helicopter flight simulation handling qualities fidelity assessment using ADS-33 . He has gained experience in the development of ship simulation models and more recently been responsible for the development of a new high fidelity helicopter – slung load simulation capability. In 2005, he led the development of a real time simulation tool, the Maritime Helicopter Aid (MHA) as part of a Commonwealth sponsored Capability Technology Program (CTD). This was successfully developed and tested. David has led the development of the Hammerhead VTOL and V22 UAV platforms and is the lead engineer for the Sea Harrier FA2 return to flight and Harrier T4 programs.

Rob Curtin BEng (Aero), MSc (Flight Dynamics)

Director / Head of Aerospace Systems

Rob Curtin completed his Bachelor of Aerospace Engineering at RMIT University in 1991. He then served as an Engineering Officer in the RAAF, ultimately as a flight test engineer at the Aircraft Research & Development Unit. His post-graduate studies at Cranfield involved research into thrust vectoring flight control. Rob had a number of aircraft systems engineering roles within Defence and commercial industry, with projects including conceptual design work for Eurofighter Typhoon and flight control testing for the Fairchild-Dornier 728. Subsequently, as an aerospace consultant, he worked with the Australian Defence Science and Technology (DST) Group to define and grow its flight modelling and simulation capabilities. He has also worked with the Australian Antarctic Division on aviation requirements for the future Icebreaker. In 2012, Rob joined AVT as Head of Aerospace Systems and in 2013 was appointed to the board as an executive director. He continues to support DST in tasks involving capability analysis, operations research, autonomous aircraft, flight dynamics and performance assessment.

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