Frank Robinson is a household name in the aircraft industry. Born in Washington, DC, in 1930, he built a well-curated professional career and garnered a myriad of industry accolades. He is the pioneer and the main backbone of Robinson Helicopter Company. His fascination with helicopters saw him work his way up the ladder learning the ins and outs of helicopter design. He attended the University of Washington to graduate with a BSME degree. Frank Robinson’s career hit the road running in 1957, working with Cessna Aircraft Company. His three and a half years at Cessna honed his career with a breadth of skills and experience.
He curated his professional career working with heavyweight companies, including Umbaugh, McCulloch Motor Company, and Kaman Aircraft. Frank Robinson garnered an impeccable reputation throughout his professional-driven career. However, his interest in developing small and affordable helicopters saw him resign to pursue his entrepreneurial drive. In 1973, he leveraged his business intuition and expertise to initiate Robinson Helicopter Company. Robinson built his first R22 helicopter in 1975 and was FAA-certified in 1979. The R22 prototype marked its footprints in late 1979 and rose to become the world’s leading selling civil helicopter. In the mid-1980s, the tech entrepreneur introduced the R44 helicopter, which received its FAA certification in 1992. R44 popularity significantly grew, prompting Robinson to branch out the R44 product line.
In 2002, Robinson Helicopter Company redesigned the R44 to develop Raven II encompassing a fuel-injected engine. As a result, R44 hastily became popular and the company’s top-selling helicopter. Today, the company has delivered thousands of R44 models worldwide. In 2005, Robinson merged with Rolls Royce to develop to institute the unique RR300 turbine engine. The five-place turbine helicopter took the market by storm and garnered FAA certification in 2010. Without question, Robinson Helicopter Company has instituted some of the best and the world’s leading civil helicopters.
Frank Robinson’s reputation in producing world-class and most reliable helicopters cost-effectively is well-deserved. Besides new production, the tech entrepreneur has been the propelling force behind the company’s profound accomplishments. The helicopter company inspects, manufactures, and assembles its helicopters at the California factory.