All posts for the day March 4th, 2023

PRESS RELEASE – March 4, 2023

EUROPEAN ROTORS is preparing for its biggest show to date, building on the lessons learned from its first two editions. It is expanding from three days to four and moving from its first location in Cologne, Germany.

EUROPEAN ROTORS 2023 will take place in Madrid, Spain, 27–30 November in Hall 9 of the IFEMA MADRID Convention Centre—only 10 minutes from the Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport (LEMD).

EUROPEAN ROTORS is organised by the European Helicopter Association (EHA) and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The 2023 event will be hosted by the Spanish Helicopter Association (ATAIRE) and produced by Helicopter Association International (HAI). EUROPEAN ROTORS also benefits from the strong support of market leaders, including Airbus, Bell, Boeing, Leonardo, Pratt & Whitney, Robinson, Safran, and others.

“We could not have been happier with the first two shows, and we know that our attendees and exhibitors agree with this assessment,” says Christian Müller, Chairman of EHA. “But as they say, the third time is the charm. EUROPEAN ROTORS is all about bringing the community together to exchange knowledge, learn from each other, and debate, with one joint goal: to improve safety in vertical aviation operations.”

The extra day of the show, on 27 November, will focus on safety by organising the EASA Rotorcraft and VTOL Symposium as a stand-alone event. It remains the flagship of the EUROPEAN ROTORS broad conference programme, presenting the latest rotorcraft and vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) developments. The educational programme is augmented by certified training sessions, best-practice seminars, and hands-on presentations in the Rotor Safety Zone and workshops.

“EASA’s primary focus is safe flight throughout the European Union,” says David Solar, Head of the General Aviation and VTOL Department for EASA. “This event allows us to work directly with the manufacturers, suppliers, operators, and individuals in this industry. We use this show to collaborate with everyone on developing the latest and smartest safety programmes.”

Tickets to the EASA Symposium include coffee breaks and a networking evening on 27 November. Symposium attendees will also receive a free three-day pass to the EUROPEAN ROTORS show floor, open from 28–30 November.

The 2022 EUROPEAN ROTORS show featured more than 211 exhibitors from 57 countries, and organisers predict an even larger event in Madrid. “The 2023 show is selling extremely well, with a much larger number of booths already reserved by our previous participants,” says Müller.

A primary feature of the educational programme at EUROPEAN ROTORS remains the three stages with silent conferencing, offering three full days of topics covering all aspects of rotorcraft operations, challenges, and research. The adjoining conference centre is the location for training, workshops, and customer briefings by the industry. In addition, EASA will contribute to other panels and workshops held at the conference centre and on the show floor. In the static display, EASA will co-organise the expanding Rotor Safety Zone, which this year will include ESPN-R hoist group training.

Rotorthon, the EUROPEAN ROTORS talent event, will take place again this year. This educational programme for students, including online and in-person teams, challenges them to innovate and solve various pressing issues in the VTOL industry. Example topics are concepts for the next generation of VTOLs, public acceptance of urban mobility, support for disaster relief, joint use of drones and rotorcraft for the same mission, and much more. Information as to the 2023 Rotorthon programme will be available soon. This year, more teams will be allowed to apply, and the selection of the three finalist teams for each challenge will include public votes posted via social media.

EUROPEAN ROTORS continues to cover all aspects of the rotorcraft industry—its many stakeholders, new technologies, innovations, and methodologies. Mission types include helicopter air ambulance and search and rescue, police and public safety, aerial work and disaster relief, passenger transport, and smart urban air mobility.

Exhibitors at HAI HELI-EXPO 2023 are encouraged to visit the EUROPEAN ROTORS sales lounge at Booth #B4457 during the show to learn about all the additional opportunities. “We invite everyone interested in our unique event to come by and learn more,” says Müller. “They will see that we are getting close to filling our space, and we have a special 10 % discount for exhibitors who book their booth during HAI HELI-EXPO.” This offer ends on March 9.


EUROPEAN ROTORS: The VTOL Show and Safety Conference brings together every aspect of the rotorcraft industry in Europe. The event sees the European Helicopter Association (EHA) and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) coming together to bring to the VTOL industry its most significant trade event outside of the United States. With three parallel conference streams and dedicated areas for eVTOL, autonomous operations, and other key future technologies, EUROPEAN ROTORS is already the go-to event for European suppliers of rotorcraft, parts, services, and every other aspect of the industry.

PRESS RELEASE – Rome, 03 March 2023

  • The helicopters will be delivered to prime operators Babcock, CQ Rescue and StarFlight Australia, to carry out HEMS and Search and Rescue missions
  • The AW139 has been chosen by several operators in Australia in recent years, with a fleet of over 60 units operating in HEMS/SAR, law enforcement, offshore and government duties
  • Leonardo has announced further growth in presence of the AW139 intermediate twin engine helicopter in Australia at Avalon, with orders for a total of six aircraft by three different prime operators: Babcock Australasia (Babcock), RACQ CQ Rescue (CQ Rescue) and StarFlight Australia. All six aircraft will be delivered from Leonardo’s Vergiate final assembly line facility in Italy during 2024.

The two AW139 platforms ordered by Babcock will carry out a range of HEMS, Search and Rescue and Inter-Hospital Patient Transport missions on behalf of an undisclosed client.

The AW139 platforms will be delivered in 2024 and will commence service in the second half of the year, following dedicated mission customisation performed locally. The new aircraft will feature a wide range of tailored equipment including: 4-axis DAFCS (Digital Automatic Flight Control System) autopilot enhanced with Hover Mode; brand new Avionic Phase 8; TCAS II (Traffic Collision Avoidance System); searchlight; camera; wire cutter; and rescue hoist, among others. This new order will bring the total Babcock AW139 fleet to nine, as they already operate seven AW139s in Australia on behalf of Air Ambulance Victoria and RACQ CapRescue. Babcock’s Managing Director Aviation & Critical Services Peter Newington said expanding Babcock’s fleet of AW139 helicopters will bring enhanced capability across its contracts. “The AW139 aircraft provides increased speed range and operational capability which is essential for the vast distance and challenging terrains across Australia.”

The two AW139 platforms ordered by CQ Rescue will be used in the Mackay region of Central Queensland to perform both on-shore and off-shore EMS/SAR missions day and night and in most weather conditions.

The aircraft will feature the latest in product enhancement, technology and mission capability such as advanced avionics including the latest night vision goggle capability, search and weather radar and the latest in communications to support CQ Rescue’s extensive mission requirements. Thanks to the new AW139s, CQ Rescue will fly twice as far and with a 30% increase in mission speed compared to the previous helicopters, reaching remote and rural communities faster than ever before. The AW139s are expected to be delivered in the second quarter 2024 and will enter service prior to the end of year. The CEO of CQ Rescue, Tim Healee, expresses: “The AW139 is one of the most reliable platforms in the industry. The aeromedical service we deliver and type of missions we complete are unique, being very time consuming and over long distances. The AW139s will deliver enormous benefits to our service including new generation avionics, superior performance, proven technology, and exceptional safety features.” He also added: “This incredible acquisition of two state-of-the-art aircraft is only possible because of the generous support we receive from our community, our corporate supporters and the Queensland Government”.

StarFlight Australia’s order consists of two AW139s that will be operated in Queensland and other parts of Australia, carrying out EMS/SAR missions in both on shore and off shore capacities.

The new aircraft featuring all the latest avionics technology, patient care and search and rescue capability are expected to be delivered in late 2024 and will enter service following local inclusions and modifications required for the mission sector. This new order will bring the total of AW139s operated by the StarFlight and LifeFlight groups to 15, nine of which are dedicated to EMS/SAR missions. StarFlight Australia CEO and Director, Ashley van de Velde, says: “StarFlight Australia is pleased to have finalised the purchase of two new AW139 helicopters which will be utilised for future work. We already operate a number of these aircraft in our fleet and are constantly impressed with their reliability, quality, and serviceability. The features, technology, size, and all-round advanced capabilities [that] the AW139s offer, make these aircraft ideal for our requirements. Their versatility and readiness for various configurations also aid us in delivering tailor-made aviation solutions to our clients.”

With more than 1,130 units in service for over 280 customers in around 90 nations, and over 3.6 million flight hours logged to date since its certification in 2004, the AW139 has also proven extremely successful for rescue and emergency missions. The AW139 delivers outstanding capabilities, technology, and safety to meet stringent requirements from operators for tasks in harsh conditions to maximize effectiveness. This type features state-of-the-art avionics with advanced navigation and collision avoidance systems to enhance situational awareness and reduce pilots’ workload, unmatched speed, power margins, and overall performance; the widest cabin in its category featuring high modularity for rapid reconfiguration; a unique 60+ min run-dry capable main gear box for enhanced reliability and safety; and up to 1000 certified kits.