On a Bell 430 helicopter, you'll see what look like short wings on the side. I've seen people fueling in them, so I assume they are fuel tanks, but do they serve another purpose? Do they have a name?
Those are called sponsons and serve a few purposes:
- In a number of helicopters, they hold the fuel tanks; for example, in Sikorsky CH 53E Super Stallion, the main fuel tanks are in the sponsons. From Sikorsky archives:
The CH-53E main fuel system was contained in the extended length sponsons. Fuel for the No. 1 and No. 3 engines was supplied by a self sealing bladder fuel cell in the sponson. Fuel for the third engine (No. 2) was supplied by an additional self-sealing fuel cell in both the left and right sponsons.
They also serve as housings for main landing gear
They also serve as mounting points for stores, like external fuel tanks in CH 53E and for mounting torpedoes, as in the CH-148 Cyclone prototype below:
Image from jproc.ca
They are called sponsons and act as enclosures for the retractable main landing gear. The 430's ancestor, the Bell 222, was equipped with the same fairings.