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All posts for the month December, 2017

PRESS RELEASE – 27 December 2017

AW139 GLOBAL HELICOPTER FLEET SETS OUTSTANDING MILESTONE OF TWO MILLION FLIGHT HOUR.

  • Of the total, one million flight hours were achieved in the last three years, demonstrating impressive reliability, effectiveness, safety and supportability
  • The most successful helicopter programme in 15 years benefits from strong partnership between the Company and its customers, maintaining huge growth potential
  • Best-seller with orders for over 1000 units and nearly 900 aircraft in service to date

The AW139 intermediate twin engine helicopter global fleet has reached an outstanding milestone of two million flight hours, across all operational scenarios on five continents, while performing a wide range of missions with commercial, government and military operators. This accomplishment was reached just three years after the achievement of the first million showing impressive reliability, effectiveness, safety and supportability across a range of missions.

With the AW139 fleet leader having exceeded 12,000 hours on a single aircraft, nearly 900 units are today in service out of over 1000 on order by more than 300 customers in 80 countries worldwide. The global reach of the AW139, assembled in Philadelphia and Vergiate, has resulted in the type becoming a benchmark as the best-selling helicopter in its weight category and the most successful helicopter programme in the last 15 years. The type covers the widest range of applications with high flexibility including SAR, EMS, law enforcement and homeland security, patrol, firefighting, disaster relief, offshore transport, VIP/Corporate transport, utility and military duties.

This latest operational achievement is the combined result of the AW139’s design, quality, performance and market success as well as Company’s capability in supporting the worldwide fleet. The two million flight hour milestone was made possible through the variety of Leonardo services and support packages and the extended support network distributed in geographies around the world.

The AW139 complies with the latest certification and safety standards, offering outstanding overall performance with impressive power margin and one engine inoperative capability and also with a certified 60+ MGB ‘run dry’ capability which provides the highest standard in terms of safety.

Designed to allow high versatility and customized solutions, the AW139 is available with more than 1000 certified equipment options. Among some of the latest innovative systems available for the type are the LIPS and FIPS (Limited and Full Icing Protection Systems, respectively), and the OPLS (Obstacle Proximity Lidar System) that enhance mission capability and safety.

The AW139 has significantly grown its capabilities in years. This includes a maximum take-off weight extension (MTOW) to 7,000 kg for newly built and retrofitted aircraft, and as a result, new Cat A offshore enhanced procedures, avionic suite releases delivering ADSB-Out (automated dependent surveillance-broadcast), TCAS II (Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System), RNP performance (Required Navigation Performance), EGPWS update (Enhanced Ground Proximity System), Wide Area Augmentation System/Localizer Performance with Vertical Guidance, and many other features.

Supportability has also been strengthened. A 30% reduction in maintenance time has been achieved with a dedicated Service Excellence initiative. Leonardo has established a Reliability Data Sharing Group (RDSG) and has launched a Flight Crew Operations Manual (FCOM) as additional services. Since its certification in 2004, approximately 5300 pilots and 7700 technicians have been trained with over 150,000 simulator hours logged to date.

The AW139 helicopter is part of the family of new generation helicopters produced by Leonardo that also includes the AW169 and AW189. These models all possess the same high-performance flight characteristics and safety features whilst sharing the same common cockpit concept and design philosophy. This approach facilitates synergies for operators of these types in areas such as training, maintenance and support. The AW139 design, success and experience have been key to the development of these latest additions to the product range and the family concept itself.

PRESS RELEASE – 27 December 2017

AW109 TREKKER HELICOPTER ACHIEVES EASA CERTIFICATION.

  • Newest type in the light twin-engine segment strengthening Leonardo’s position in this market for public services and utility duties
  • EASA Certification allows deliveries to start in the first quarter of 2018
  • Over 40 aircraft ordered by customers worldwide to date

Leonardo is pleased to announce that the AW109 Trekker helicopter was issued with type certification by the European Aviation Safety Agency(EASA) yesterday. Deliveries will start in the first quarter of 2018. The milestone marks the entry into the market of the newest light twin-engine helicopter designed by Leonardo, further strengthening its leading position in a key market segment, in particular to meet the growing demand for greater capability, versatility and cost effectiveness for public services and utility duties.

The AW109 Trekker, based on the bestselling AW109/Grand range of helicopters, is equipped with skid landing gear and a state-of-the-art Genesys Aerosystems “glass” cockpit. The cockpit display system provides pilots only with the necessary information to help reduce their workload while flying in challenging environments and in demanding weather conditions. The AW109 Trekker retains the same characteristics of high productivity, excellent performance and flying qualities, high maneuverability, robustness, advanced navigation capabilities and high inherent safety of the other light twin helicopters produced by Leonardo. Power is provided by two FADEC equipped Pratt & Whitney Canada PW207C turbine engines.

The spacious cabin, the same size as the Grand/GrandNew, can accommodate up to six passengers or one stretcher with three/four medical attendants or two stretchers and two medical attendants. Capable of single pilot operation, an additional passenger can be carried in the cockpit if required. The AW109 Trekker incorporatesmany safety features including a cocoon-type airframe; crash resistant fuel system, crew and passengers seats, full Cat. A / Class 1 performance in hot environments and a 30 minute ‘run-dry’ main gear box.

The aircraft is designed with a modular configuration approach in order to meet different needs, from single pilot VFR to dual pilot IFR. A wide range of role equipment is available including a cargo hook, external rescue hoist, searchlight, external loudspeakers, FLIR (Forward Looking Infra-Red) camera, video downlink, snow skis and emergency floats as well as a wide range of interior layouts to meet various customers’ operational requirements.Leonardo’s Customer Support & Training Global Network provides AW109 Trekker operators with a range of Service Plans and a state-of-the-art training capability to maximise operational safety and aircraft availability. TheAW109 Trekker can be easily configured for a wide range of roles and is the ideal solution for EMS, SAR, law enforcement, utility, surveillance, passenger transport and government duties. Orders for over 40 AW109 Trekkers have been placed by customers worldwide to date.

Registered few days ago this factory new Leonardo Helicopters AW139 ( c/n 31762 ) to Prada Spa as I-PRAX … here pictured while on display during “Family Day 2017” Event at Vergiate (VA) still wearing test registrations I-EASH. December 2017.

Few months after the cancellation of I-NAVY towards France, also the Eurocopter EC145 I-JUNO followed the same fate. I-JUNO (c/n 9271) was originally registered in Italy during the month of June 2010 with Inaer Aviation Italia and now deleted on date 15 December 2017.

PRESS RELEASE – 18 December 2017

Erickson Begins 20th Season of Fighting Fires in Australia.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Erickson Incorporated, a leading aerospace manufacturer and global aerial services company that has fought fires for nearly 50 years, has returned to serve the citizens of Australia for its 20th year. The October start of the fire season parallels the beginning of summer “Down Under,” and Erickson has six S-64 Aircranes located in or en route to Victoria, South Australia; New South Wales; and Perth, Western Australia. The National Aerial Firefighting Centre (NAFC) extended a contract to supply Aircranes for 2017-2018, through Australian partner Kestrel Aviation.
Erickson’s first season in Australia began in 1997, with a single aircraft in Melbourne, Victoria and continued to grow and evolve to the current partnership with Kestrel Aviation which serve four states through five bushfire agencies. Erickson is remembered for raising public and international awareness of aerial firefighting effectiveness with ‘Elvis’ during the critical fire campaigns of 2001 in New South Wales.(All Erickson Aircranes have a nickname painted across the nose of the aircraft.) Four Erickson employees have served for all 20 years of the contract and look forward to returning again this year.
Douglas Kitani, Erickson CEO and Director said, “Erickson has an outstanding reputation for having some of the most experienced pilots and maintenance crews in firefighting. We appreciate the trust of our agency customers in Australia and will endeavor to do our best for the people of Australia.”

The fifth Leonardo Helicopters AW169 was delivered to Babcock Mission Critical Services Italia in November … and registered as I-LHCA. This new helicopter entered into service a few days ago from the AREU Regione Lombardia HEMS base of Bresso (MI) as “Horus 4”, replacing the previously operated AW139 … thanks to Diego GARAVAGLIA for these first great images taken during an active rescue in Cuggiono (MI), December 2017.