A NEW Photo Report Page is now online … including 105 new images from a great HAI Heli-Expo 2018 event held in Las Vegas, NV © by Francesco & Gianfilippo COLASANTO, Oscar BERNARDI.
Heli-Expo 2018 in Las Vegas is over …. we will continue to post few more Press Releases and related images during the next weeks. … but, in the meantime, we will start to work on a full photo report page with the help of our photo contributors that were at the event. STAY TUNED …
Heli-Expo 2018 – Press Release – 1 March 2018
LEONARDO CELEBRATES HELICOPTER ORDERS AT HELI-EXPO 2018 OF NEARLY 140 MILLION EURO.
- Seventeen aircraft across Aw119Kx, AW109 GrandNew, AW109 Trekker, AW169, AW139 and AW189 models
- Deliveries through to 2019 with aircraft to perform EMS missions across Europe, VIP/corporate and passenger transport in UK, Spain, Japan and Argentina, wind farm support in Germany, offshore in Indonesia and law enforcement in China among others
- First contract for the recently EASA-certified AW109 Trekker in Northern Europe
Finally, the Tianjin Municipal Public Security Bureau has chosen the AW139 for law enforcement emergency response, security, traffic control, search and rescue (SAR), and other public utility duties, expanding the presence of Leonardo in China for law enforcement roles. The Company has already delivered to Chinese operators more than 20 aircraft of various models for this task to date, including 9 AW139s, confirming itself as the law enforcement market leader in China.
Heli-Expo 2018 – Press Release – 1 March 2018
Boston MedFlight orders three Airbus H145s to upgrade hospital consortium’s air medical transport fleet.
New England nonprofit has been an Airbus Helicopters customer since 1985.
Las Vegas, 28 February 2018 – Boston MedFlight, a nonprofit organization that provides critical care air medical transport for Boston-area and other Eastern Massachusetts hospitals, has ordered three new versatile Airbus H145 helicopters as part of a comprehensive plan to upgrade its fleet with more modern and more capable aircraft.
“The H145 platform suits our needs because of its versatility, safety, durability, and reliability,” said Charlie Blathras, Chief Operations Manager for Boston MedFlight. “It is the best all-around vehicle for our mission profile.” The first two helicopters will be placed into service this spring, with the third arriving in the fall. The new aircraft will replace Boston MedFlight’s H145 predecessors, two EC145s, and a BK117.
Boston MedFlight has flown Airbus helicopters since the consortium’s founding in 1985. “We are proud that Boston MedFlight, one of this nation’s leading critical care transport services, has once again placed its faith in helicopters from Airbus, as well as in our company’s support and service team,” said Christopher Emerson, President of Airbus Helicopters Inc. “We believe the H145 will be an excellent fit for the Boston MedFlight mission, and we look forward to our continued partnership.” Boston MedFlight serves a consortium of seven Boston-area medical centers and transports more than 4,000 critically ill and injured patients each year, including approximately 1,800 by air. The nonprofit provides expert care and efficient transportation to adult, pediatric and neonatal patients with a diverse range of diagnoses, including medical, trauma, and neurological, respiratory, cardiac and obstetrical concerns.
The Airbus H145 is the class-leader among light twin-engine helicopters, incorporating Airbus Helicopters’ advanced cockpit design and innovative Helionix avionics suite. Its versatility, spacious cabin, and rear-loading clamshell doors have made it the leading choice for air medical programs in the United States and worldwide. Airbus Helicopters Inc. is the leading provider of civil and commercial helicopters in the U.S. The company is based in Grand Prairie, Texas where it operates helicopter completion, paint, and MRO facilities, performs flight test and engineering support, and flight and maintenance training for customers. The Columbus, Miss. plant produces UH-72A Lakota helicopters for the U.S. Army and the H125 for the civil market.
Heli-Expo 2018 – Press Release – 1 March 2018
Helionix fleet hits 100,000 flight-hour milestone.
Airbus Helicopters’ digital avionics suite now operational on H135, H145 and H175, coming up on H160.
Las Vegas, 1 March 2018 – Airbus’ fleet of helicopters equipped with the Helionix avionics system have surpassed the symbolic milestone of 100.000 flight hours, just three years after customer operations started.
Initially in service with the H145 and H175, this digital avionics suite was later certified in the H135 and in the future will equip the H160 as well as other helicopters in the current and future Airbus Helicopters product line. Designed by Airbus Helicopters to offer increased mission flexibility and operational safety, Helionix grew out of operators’ need for a more powerful avionics system with greater functions and computing capacity, but which was easier to use and relied on fewer displays. It comprises two computers and a one-of-a-kind cockpit layout with up to four electronic displays designed to improve pilots’ situational awareness in flight. “Helionix is a family concept that has been hailed by users for its intuitive human machine interface and autopilot, features which allow pilots to concentrate more fully on the flight itself and increase flight safety” declared Jean-Jacques Mevel, Head of Helionix Program. “
We keep investing on Helionix with regular software enhancement, which lately included bolstering the SAR capabilities as well as the Rig N’ Fly automatic oil platform mode approaches”. The avionics suite includes a four-axis autopilot to reduce pilot workload, and a First Limit Indicator in which engine instrument data is shown under one indicator. A GPS navigation and communication system and a Traffic Advisory System complete the suite, while a mission system, including Digital map, a Helicopter Terrain Avoidance System and a Synthetic Vision System, give pilots full situational awareness. Next step will involve enhancing functions like the Automated Dependent Surveillance-broadcast, the Synthetic Vision System and the Helicopter Terrain Awareness and Warning System advanced modes as well as proposing connectivity advanced solutions. At present, more than 250 helicopters are today operated with Helionix, involving over 40 operators worldwide and carrying out a wide range of missions including EMS, law enforcement, Police, Oil&Gas, SAR, VIP etc.
Heli-Expo 2018 – Press Release – 1 March 2018
Babcock to operate the first fleet of H160s.
Las Vegas, 1 March 2018 – Babcock is set to become the global launch customer for the H160 after signing a five year frame agreement for the purchase of a fleet of H160s. The fleet of H160s is destined for EMS and other critical services missions starting in Europe and to be deployed progressively across Babcock’s bases worldwide.
“The H160 was a natural choice for Babcock’s operations as its large cabin and low vibration levels and its state-of-the-art technology will make it a safe and comfortable environment for mission critical services to work in” said Roger Hardy, Chief Executive Aviation, Babcock International Group. “We are sure that the innovations that the H160 brings to the market will help us deliver our high standards of quality, safety and cost-effectiveness”.
“We are proud that the largest civil helicopter operator has selected the H160 to become its next generation solution for saving lives. As the H160 launch customer, Babcock inaugurates a new era for helicopter operators” said Ben Bridge, Executive Vice President for Global Business at Airbus Helicopters. “In every aspect, from industrial production, to maintenance and fleet management and of course mission readiness, the H160 represents the new standard in helicopter capabilities for the next 30 years” he added.
With 68 patents, the H160 integrates Airbus Helicopters’ latest technological innovations aimed at providing passengers with superior comfort thanks to the sound-reducing Blue Edge blades and superb external visibility for both passengers and pilots, not to mention the additional safety features provided by Helionix’s flight envelope protection and reduced pilot workload. Airbus Helicopters’ new industrial model, based on site specialisation and a plug and play component assembly process, has reduced the H160’s time to market to 24 weeks giving customers more flexibility. This will enable customers to confirm their mission configuration at later stage based on market needs.
Babcock’s Aviation business provides mission critical services, ranging from aerial emergency medical services, aerial fire-fighting, Search and Rescue, Surveillance operations, and Oil and Gas transportation, in 14 countries with over 51 years’ experience in saving lives and protecting the environment.
Heli-Expo 2018 – Press Release – 28 February 2018
Metro Aviation places order for 25 Airbus EC145e helicopters to meet demand for lower-cost, twin-engine operations.
Development of IFR capabilities has enhanced aircraft’s appeal to operators.
Las Vegas, 27 February 2018 – Airbus Helicopters Inc. announced Tuesday that Metro Aviation Inc. had ordered an unprecedented 25 EC145e helicopters that it will place into service providing air medical transport and other aerial services. It is one of the larger commercial helicopter orders ever booked by the U.S. based company. Metro was the first customer in the world for the lighter weight and lower cost version of the EC145 when it was launched by Airbus Helicopters in 2015, placing an initial order for six aircraft. The helicopter was launched initially only for Visual Flight Rules (VFR) use and Metro put it to work in air medical transport and utility markets. Since that time Metro, working with Genesis Aerosystems has developed and received Federal Aviation Administration Supplemental Type Certificates for a VFR electronic flight instrument system (EFIS) and an autopilot and stability augmentation system for the EC145e. Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) certification is expected this year. “This order is the result of the years our company has invested in building and nurturing a great business relationship with the leadership of Metro Aviation and providing them with world-class aircraft and customer support,” said Christopher Emerson, President of Airbus Helicopters Inc. “We look forward to working closely with Metro as they expand their business.”
Metro has identified a sizeable, untapped market for the EC145e helicopter. “The versatility and price point made it an attractive addition to a large number of rotary wing fleets, and we have put seven in service since committing to our first purchase in 2015,” said Metro Aviation President Mike Stanberry. “The EC145e model has proven to be a workhouse across various mission profiles, and we are excited about putting these new aircraft into service within our family of customers.”
Having developed STCs for the EFIS and autopilot systems, Metro has found significant interest for the lower cost EC145e from a diverse group of customers, including air medical, law enforcement, utility and other missions. Airbus Helicopters will produce the EC145e at its final assembly plant in Columbus, Miss. where it also produces the UH-72A Lakota for the U.S. Army and the H125 commercial helicopter for the North American market. Metro will customize the aircraft for individual customers at its completion center in Shreveport, La. The EC145e is a powerful, reliable and affordable light twin helicopter boasting a short delivery lead-time, excellent cost competitiveness, and increased useful payload. It retains the power, performance, and reliability of the EC145 and the same large cabin with clam-shell rear doors for easy and safe loading and unloading. The standard EC145e includes a single pilot VFR glass cockpit featuring the Garmin G500H and GTN 650 GPS and communication system. It has a maximum takeoff weight of 7,903 lbs. Combining the well-known features of the EC145 with the benefits of a predefined configuration – complete with a dedicated equipment list – the EC145e is perfectly suited for law enforcement missions, air medical, utility, aerial work, firefighting, and passenger transport. Airbus Helicopters Inc. is the leading provider of civil and commercial helicopters in the U.S. The company is based in Grand Prairie, Texas where it operates helicopter completion, paint, and MRO facilities, performs flight test and engineering support, and flight and maintenance training for customers. The Columbus, Miss. plant produces UH-72A Lakota helicopters for the U.S. Army and the H125 for the civil market.
Heli-Expo 2018 – Press Release – 26 February 2018
BELL LAUNCHES NEW BELL 407GXi.
At Heli-Expo 2018, Bell introduced the new Bell 407GXi with new avionics, an upgraded engine, and new executive interior design options.
Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announced today the introduction of the Bell 407GXi at Heli-Expo 2018. The Bell 407GXi incorporates new avionics, an upgraded engine, and new executive interior design options.
“We are always looking at ways to innovate our current product line to provide our customers with the most capable, dependable, and technologically advanced aircraft in the market. The Bell 407GXi delivers improved pilot awareness, higher precision navigation, enhanced engine controls, and improved connectivity.”
Garmin’s G1000H NXi Integrated Flight Deck, complete with high-definition displays and faster processors offers increased brightness and clarity, faster startup and map rendering as well as connectivity to tablets and smartphones. Upgrades to the Bell 407GXi include a dual-channel FADEC engine with full automatic relight, and enhanced situational awareness through the G1000H NXi.
The Bell 407GXi is outfitted with the new Rolls-Royce M250-C47E/4 dual channel FADEC turbine engine delivering exceptional hot and high performance, fuel efficiency and the ability to cruise at 133 kts/246 km/h. Newly designed executive configuration options bring a modernized look and passenger experience to the five-seat club cabin.
Additional options for the 407GXi include the Garmin FlightStream 510 that allows pilots to upload flight plans from smart devices, Garmin SurfaceWatch that provides runway identification and alerting technology, a 3,100-lb. cargo hook, and Health Usage Monitoring (HUMS) for aircraft system diagnostics.
The Bell 407 GXi has been certified by Transport Canada and the first delivery is scheduled this Spring.
Waypoint Leasing (Ireland) Limited (“Waypoint”), the largest independent global helicopter leasing company, today announced in partnership with Leonardo Company (“Leonardo”), the launch of a comprehensive maintenance and training services offering in support of Waypoint’s Medium Utility Helicopter (“MUH”) reconfiguration program.
The Waypoint MUH, a utility re-configured AW139, leverages the performance capabilities of the AW139 platform to serve a wide range of utility mission areas, including: firefighting, light EMS/SAR, mining, powerline support, cargo & utility transport, and general aerial work. With these added support services, the MUH program becomes a replacement opportunity for customers operating in the utility segment.
Allan Rowe, Managing Director of Sales & Relationship Management at Waypoint, said, “We are pleased to work together with Leonardo Helicopters and take advantage of the full AW139 lifecycle, which will greatly benefit utility operators. Waypoint’s MUH offers modern technology, the latest safety systems, and the superior performance of the AW139 at comparable costs to competing legacy utility aircraft. This program leverages the success of the existing AW139 platform with the opportunity to serve the global utility market segment.”
Emilio Dalmasso, Senior Vice President Global Sales at Leonardo Helicopters, said, “The best-in-class AW139 platform, with over two million flight hours to date, has proven itself capable of supporting a wide range of missions. Waypoint’s MUH program is an important example of how companies are thoughtfully expanding the lifecycle value of the AW139, while positioning it to meet the modern demands of utility operations. Our programs will be tailored to ensure cost competitiveness, and will include entry into service, training, and dedicated power-by-the-hour support plans.”
More information is available at waypointleasing.com/MUH. The aircraft will be on display at the Leonardo booth at HeliExpo in Las Vegas from February 27th. More information regarding the aircraft’s demonstration tour will be released in the next several weeks.
Since its inception in 2013, Waypoint has been active in supporting oil and gas, utility, firefighting and other industrial-focused helicopter operators. Waypoint’s portfolio includes more than 160 aircraft for 35 customers in 32 countries with total assets in excess of $1.6 billion. Additionally, Waypoint has firm and option orders with aircraft manufacturers for more than 85 helicopters valued at more than $1.1 billion, to be delivered over the next four years.
HELI-EXPO 2018 – PRESS RELEASE – 28 February 2018
CHINESE FLEET GROWS STRONGER WITH ORDERS FOR ADDITIONAL 26 HELICOPTERS WORTH IN EXCESS OF 120 MILLION EURO.
- Contracts signed by Sino-US, the exclusive distributor of Leonardo in the Chinese civil and commercial helicopter market, for 7 AW119Kx, 15 AW109 Trekker and 4 AW139 helicopters valued more than 120 million euro with deliveries in 2018 and 2019
- Latest orders follow those made in the last two years for 65 aircraft, particularly for EMS helicopters, confirming Leonardo as the leading helicopter supplier in China in both 2016 and 2017, the company with the largest deployed EMS helicopter fleet, and Sino-US as the national distributor with best performance.
- Leonardo set a new yearly record delivery in China with 30 units shipped in 2017
- More than 200 helicopters of various types produced by Leonardo have been sold to Chinese customers to date for a range of both commercial and public services
Leonardo announced today that Sino-US Intercontinental Helicopter Investment (Sino-US) of China has signed contracts for additional 26 helicopters, including 7 AW119Kx single engine, 15 AW109 Trekker light twins and 4 AW139 intermediate twins with deliveries expected to start this year through to 2019. The contracts are valued in excess of 120 million euro.
The orders follow a series of contracts, particularly for EMS helicopters, signed by Sino-US in recent years which include 25 AW119Kx single engines and a mix of 30 AW139s and AW169s in 2016, followed by 10 AW109 Trekkers in 2017. These latest orders strengthens the collaboration between Leonardo Helicopter and Sino-US in China, including Hong Kong and Macau. The presence of Leonardo in China grows stronger with more than 200 helicopters sold to Chinese customers of various types to date for a range of both commercial and public services, while maintaining its leading role in the EMS market. Leonardo has set a new yearly delivery record in the Chinese market with 30 units in 2017. With further deliveries planned in the next couple of years, Chinese civil operator Kingwing would become one of the largest for Leonardo helicopters worldwide.