Founded in 2004, air taxi company Heligolfo runs out of Olaya Herrera airport in Medellín, Colombia and operates Cessna 402 and Learjet 35 aircraft on both domestic and international charter flights. They’ve been Spidertracks customers since 2013, utilising our hardware and software to make things easier for their pilots and to provide better customer experiences for their patrons. We spoke with Heligolfo pilot and general manager Cap. Juan Camilo Velez to learn a bit more about what Spidertracks does for his organisation and what they love about our product. Read our interview below!
How did you become aware of Spidertracks, and when did you begin using us? What was involved in your decision to become a Spidertracks customer?
I first heard of Spidertracks at the beginning of 2013 from a friend who has an air taxi operation in the U.S. and was considering using it. I purchased three units and started using them later that year. When making my decision to purchase, I wanted hardware and software designed for aviation use. I wanted something reliable and (most of all) stress-free for the crew, because I didn’t want the pilots having to manipulate it much. I also needed software I could personalise according to my needs.
What Spidertracks features and functionalities are the most important for your organisation, and why?
The most important is obviously being able to track the aircraft in real-time, all the time. I really like to be able to change settings depending on the type of flight. It’s important for us that the unit doesn’t require much — if any — manipulation from the crew so that we don’t have to be replacing it because one of the pilots dropped it, broke it, or lost it somehow. Also, the different terrain layers are pretty cool!
What would you say are the biggest strengths of the Spidertracks system?
Reliability and ease of use.
What key issues for your business has Spidertracks helped with?
I remember a while back, some of the engines kept coming back with cracked cylinders. We suspected it was from shock cooling due to rapid descents with little or no power, but we weren’t really sure — so we followed up with the tracking data from our Spiders and were able to pinpoint where, when, and which crew were having the issue with shock cooling.
Have we helped you fly safer and smarter? If so, how?
Absolutely, yes. We’ve analysed hundreds of tracks with our crews to identify potential operational risks and to adjust our operation in order to be safer. We’ve also been able to identify which routes are best, thus saving money on fuel and other resources.
How can you improve the efficiency of your operations? Download our eBook ‘A 360 degree view of efficiency’ to learn more.