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All posts for the month May, 2016

Press Release – EBACE 2016

Airbus Helicopters introduces the H160 VIP version at EBACE.
– H160 VIP design intentions revealed
– First letters of intent (LOI) signed after recent commercialisation kick-off
– Flight test campaign with Arrano engines progressing
Geneva, 24 May 2016 – Airbus Helicopters presents an exclusive first glimpse of the H160 VIP version at this year’s EBACE meeting in Geneva, which will be held from May 24-26.
Customers will have the opportunity to experience some of its features like its exclusive cabin interior, electrical footstep and hinged doors thanks to a virtual reality immersion tool.
“After the unveiling at Heli-Expo in 2015, the H160 has generated a lot of interest from operators on this strategic segment due to its unrivalled combination of innovation, design and performance,” said Bernard Fujarski, Senior Vice President and head of the H160 Program at Airbus Helicopters. “Since the recent launch of the commercialisation at Heli-Expo this year, we have already signed some letters of intent for the H160. With EBACE marking the unveiling of the H160 in its VIP version, we expect to sign additional LOI with private and corporate customers” he added.
Airbus Helicopters launched a design contest in October 2015 with 5 designers competing to create the H160 VIP cabin interior.
“After evaluation from a large panel of customers and specialists in luxury goods, Pegasus Design style intention has been selected,” said Frederic Lemos, head of Private and Business Aviation. “Our in-house design team will now work closely with Pegasus Design to establish a new standard of VIP cabin interiors on the private and business aviation market, ensuring that the H160 will propose the same level of excellence, innovation, and emotion inside and out” he added.
The H160 development continues to progress as the two prototypes in flight testing have logged around 140 hours with the second prototype (PT2) having performed the 100th flight mid-May. PT2 has been flying with Turbomeca’s Arrano engines since January 2016 and PT1, whose retrofit is being finalized, will be flying with the Arrano engines in the next couple of days.
The flight envelope is continuously being expanded and PT2 has reached a maximum altitude of 20,000 feet and has performed turns at 2.2G confirming expected behavior of the rotor and dampers. The upcoming milestones in the flight test campaign are the climatic campaigns, continued performance testing of the Arrano engines and finalization of aeromechanical configuration of H160.
With the most extensive range of helicopters dedicated to the private and business aviation Airbus Helicopters is the unrivalled market leader with 33% of the fleet currently in service.

H160-VIP-exterior

H160-VIP-interior

PRESS RELEASE – 29 May 2016

Era Group Inc. (Era) has announced its Search-and-Rescue (SAR) Program has
successfully completed 1,000 missions in the Gulf of Mexico.

Collaborating with Priority 1 Air Rescue (P1AR), an internationally recognized leader of
SAR services, Era pioneered the establishment of its commercial air
ambulance and search-and-rescue offering in the United States in 2010.
Three SAR-equipped Leonardo AW139 (formerly AgustaWestland) medium
helicopters operating from Era’s new super base in Houma, Louisiana and
Galveston, Texas, support the SAR Program and provide operational coverage
throughout the Gulf of Mexico Outer Continental Shelf significantly
improving offshore safety. As the world’s largest civilian operator of
Leonardo-Finmeccanica helicopters, Era was the first company to operate the
AW139 in a SAR configuration in North America.
Era’s aircraft can operate under instrument flight rules (IFR) and offer
full SAR capabilities such as a Goodrich dual hoist system, night vision,
and integrated auto hover with search pattern modes, high intensity
searchlight and a forward looking infrared system. The dedicated aircraft
feature complete advanced life support (ALS) medical care packages,
including critical care, fluid resuscitation, advanced airway, pain
management and cardiac monitoring, providing unparalleled medical response
capability.
P1AR’s multi-disciplined hoist operators, rescue swimmers and paramedics
integrate ALS patient care with helicopter hoisting operations. The P1AR
crew members are also capable of providing technical rescue for workers in
remote access and confined spaces on oil-and-gas production platforms,
drilling rigs and other installations, including offshore support vessels,
ocean freighters and cruise ships.
Combining ALS air ambulance and SAR capabilities with the highest level of
pre-hospital medical care available facilitates the provision of medical
treatment to locations previously unreachable. The SAR Program is supported
by four engineering and manufacturing development-certified medical
dispatchers, 18 IFR, night vision goggles, air ambulance and hoist-qualified
pilots and 36 P1AR medically-qualified rescue specialists.
“The 1,000 mission milestone is a testament to the status of Era’s partnered
SAR Program as the go-to solution for companies and their employees in the
Gulf of Mexico,” said Paul White, senior vice president, Commercial. “Though
we never wish the need for our services to arise, our SAR Program has become
an important component of offshore safety assurance, and we see additional
SAR opportunities both here and abroad. We take great pride in helping our
customers rest easy knowing that our SAR Program is standing by and at the
ready to assist as necessary.”
“The driving force behind the SAR Program is the passion and commitment of
everyone involved,” said Brad Matheson, president of P1AR. “The successful
completion of the 1,000th SAR mission clearly demonstrates the importance of
the offering made possible through the Era and P1AR partnership.
“The success of the SAR Program reflects the safety commitment of the
subscribers and other customers to ensure their staff, clients and community
are afforded the best possible response in the event of an emergency. The
capabilities of the SAR Program are built upon innovation and training that
will provide further opportunities for continued growth in this highly
specialized sector of the helicopter industry.”

era1-600

era2-600

era3-600

Thanks to Oscar BERNARDI for these images of the ERA RESCUE Helicopters operating in the Gulf of Mexico.

ANSV news – 25 May 2016

Incidente nel Trentino Alto Adige.

L’ANSV informa di aver avviato un’inchiesta di sicurezza su un incidente avvenuto nel fine settimana nel Trentino Alto Adige. L’incidente, occorso sabato 21 maggio, ha interessato l’elicottero AS350 B3 marche I-CMSZ, che, in atterraggio in prossimità di Castelrotto (BZ), per cause da accertare, riportava danni strutturali. Nessuna conseguenza per i due occupanti.

icmsz-pad-1601-600

Press release – EBACE 2016

Monacair takes delivery of its 6th and last H130 from Airbus Helicopters.

· The six H130s operate scheduled flights between Monaco and Nice.
· More than 15,000 passengers transported since start of operations in January.

Marignane, 25 May 2016 – Monacair has received the last H130 of a contract for six units signed in September 2015. Like the previous five aircraft, the new helicopter will join the regular scheduled flight service that Monacair has set up between Monaco Heliport and Nice International airport.

Monacair started this shuttle service in January this year after taking delivery of their first H130. Since then, 15,000 passengers have benefited from this pioneering service which allows reducing the travelling time between Monaco and Nice Airport to as little as seven minutes. With the entire fleet of six aircraft in service, delivered in only 5 months, Monacair will now be able to generate 40 rotations per day.

“Setting up this service- which is the world’s shortest regular line- was a real challenge but after almost six months I can say I am extremely satisfied with the helicopter” said Gilbert Schweitzer, managing director of Monacair. “Our customers are really appreciative of the helicopter’s level of comfort as well as the visibility which allows them to enjoy the views over the Côte d’Azur. Thanks to the cargo pod, we have also 20% extra cargo capacity for the luggage. Our customer’s positive feedback is the best proof that the H130 was the right choice.”

Specializing in private helicopter management, Monacair has valuable experience in terms of VIP transport and serves customers seeking both personalized and high-quality services. Based in Monaco, the operator manages a fleet of 20 helicopters, half of which are Airbus Helicopters. Thanks to the purchase of these six H130 light helicopters, Monacair now operates its own helicopter fleet.

“We are extremely happy to see that the H130 is living up to our customer’s expectations in ,terms of performance, availability and quality of flight experience”, said Frederic Lemos, Head of Private & Business Aviation Europe at Airbus Helicopters. “Monacair can count on Airbus Helicopters’ best support to keep the six H130 flying and offer a first-class service to all the passengers.”

The H130 comes from the Ecureuil family of light helicopters, renowned for its performance, reliability, safety and multi-mission capability. The helicopter accommodates one pilot and up to six passengers.

monacair-ec130

PRESS RELEASE – 12 MAY 2016

Airbus Helicopters to retrofit the Sécurité Civile’s 35 EC145s.

·         Airbus Helicopters confirmed as the industrial partner of choice for the Sécurité Civile

·         Avionic retrofit complying with the latest Performance Based Navigation regulations

·         EC145 Retrofits to be carried out by the French Military Support Centre (MSC-F)

Marignane, 12 May 2016 – Airbus Helicopters has been awarded a contract by the French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA) to retrofit the avionics suite of the 35 EC145 helicopters operated by the Sécurité Civile, an agency of the French Ministry of Interior that performs critical search and rescue and medical evacuation services throughout the French territory.

As part of this retrofit, all aircraft will be equipped with an improved avionics suite allowing them to retain their ability to perform missions in all weather conditions with the highest levels of safety, while at the same time complying with the latest Performance Based Navigation regulations.

“We are very proud of the trust that the Sécurité Civile has placed in our support and services with this second contract in less than a year” said Matthieu Louvot, Airbus Helicopters Executive Vice President Customer Support and Services. “It is a great honour for us to be confirmed as the industrial partner of choice by this reference EC145 operator to which we are also providing a comprehensive, nose-to-tail global service solution”.

The retrofit of the 35 aircraft follows on from the global services solution contract for the Sécurité Civile and Gendarmerie Nationale’s EC145 fleet awarded at the end of 2015. The aircraft, with this new contract managed by the Military Support Centre France (MSC-F), will be retrofitted over a seven-year period by Airbus Helicopters personnel deployed at the Sécurité Civile base in Nîmes in order to minimise the impact on the operational activity. The mechanical and electrical modifications necessary to integrate functions such as LPV/SBAS guidance, digital maps, and GPS installations have also been optimized to reduce the length of the retrofit operations.

“This retrofit programme ensures that our EC145s will remain capable of meeting the most demanding operational requirements with the highest levels of safety”, said Victor Devouge, head of aviation means for the Sécurité Civile. “This fleet is now enjoying an availability rate of around 95% which is absolutely essential in allowing us to perform our daily operations”, he added.

Established in 1957, the helicopter division of the Sécurité Civile operates a fleet of 35 EC145 on call 24/7 throughout France for search and rescue and medical evacuation missions. In 2015 alone they flew over 16,000 flight hours, rescuing 16,000 people.

The MSC-F is a dedicated Airbus Helicopters organisation designed to support all French military and state customers by providing them with the most tailored services fitting their specific needs. The creation of this entity illustrates Airbus Helicopters’ commitment to service quality and performance to keep customers flying, anytime, anywhere.

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