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All posts for the day March 1st, 2016

HELI-EXPO 2016 PRESS RELEASE

AW009 introduced as competitive commercial light single helicopter.

  • Market-driven upgrades to the SW-4 1.8 tonne light single engine helicopter will better meet the needs of  training, law enforcement, EMS and passenger transport operators
  • Customers will find an increase in time between overhaul on dynamic components, reducing direct maintenance costs and making the aircraft more competitive in terms of price
  • Strong interest from airborne law enforcement units, with Riverside Police Department of California signing a Letter of Interest for the aircraft
  • Anticipated FAA certification in 2Q 2017, through third-party U.S. partner, AAL USA

Finmeccanica presented today the AW009 helicopter, a commercial evolution of the SW-4, as a competitive solution into the light single-turbine segment market. During an official ceremony at Heli Expo 2016 in Louisville, Kentucky, prospective customers were able to evaluate the potential of integration of the AW009 into their training, law enforcement, emergency medical, and passenger transport fleets.

The AW009 now features a mass vibration absorber for a smoother and more comfortable ride, as well as improvements to the hydraulic system. Integrated into the cockpit is an advanced Genesys avionics display, ensuring excellent situational awareness and a user friendly interface, while maintaining pilot visibility. An optional Rolls-Royce M250-C30P engine will provide enhanced power handling for the most demanding missions. The Rolls-Royce M250-C20R (SP) engine still remains standard on the AW009 and has shown reliably high performance for existing operators.

Through attractive pricing and an increase in the time between overhaul on dynamic components, new customers will find the aircraft to be a competitive and cost-effective replacement to their existing fleet.

With strong interest from airborne law enforcement operators during demonstrations and advisory board reviews, Finmeccanica Helicopter Division has received an initial Letter of Interest from the Riverside Police Department of California, as it anticipates a near-term fleet replacement.

Finmeccanica Helicopter Division has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with AAL USA of Huntsville, Alabama, to facilitate avionics integration and FAA certification, expected by year end. Completion, prior to deliveries of the AW009, would begin from AAL USA, in 2017.

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Thanks to Massimo PIRALLA for this image from HAI Heli-Expo 2016 Event.

HELI-EXPO 2016 PRESS RELEASE

Bell Helicopter Announces Deal with Guangxi Diwang Group for 10 Bell 525s.

HAI HELI-EXPO – Louisville, KY (March 1, 2016)Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announced today a signed letter of intent with Guangxi Diwang Group for 10 Bell 525 Relentless super-medium helicopters. Guangxi Diwang Group will use the Bell 525s for tourism and search-and-rescue missions. Guangxi Diwang Group is a Commercial Development and Real Estate Investor.

“After learning more about the Bell 525, being able to experience its capabilities in the aircraft’s simulator, and seeing the prototype fly at its production center in Amarillo it was easy to determine that the Bell 525 is the best choice to fill our commercial needs in China,” said Hai Lin, Chairman of Guangxi Diwang Group. “We are eager to incorporate the aircraft into our operations and are confident that it will provide exceptional value and performance for our variety of clients and that Bell Helicopter will be there to support us.”

“The Bell 525 is the first fly-by-wire commercial helicopter, and we are excited to see our first Chinese customer come forward and make the commitment to sign a letter of intent for a significant number of aircraft to debut in that market,” said Larry Roberts, Bell Helicopter’s vice president of sales and marketing for the Bell 525 Relentless program. “With its diverse capabilities, the Bell 525 is a great fit for Guangxi Diwang Group’s range of missions while also being cost effective.”

The Bell 525 is designed to operate safely and reliably in austere environments and with decreased pilot workload. The aircraft integrates critical systems data to be easily accessible at a glance with the Garmin G5000H® suite, the first fully-integrated touch screen flight deck designed for helicopters. Best-in-class payload, cabin, cargo volumes, comfort and egress complement the technological advancements on the aircraft. The first flight of the Bell 525 was achieved on 1 July 2015 and certification of the aircraft is anticipated in 2017.

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