Special Forces Command

The German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr) have awarded Airbus Helicopters a full-service contract for the new H145M rotorcraft – which is to make its military debut with the German Air Force later this year. This seven-year comprehensive co-operative support and services agreement will ensure optimal availability, reliability and readiness for the German Air Force’s fleet of 15 H145M helicopters (previously designated the EC645 T2), which are to be used primarily in missions with the country’s Special Forces Command (Kommando Spezialkräfte).

The H145M is equipped with a modern digital glass cockpit, Night Vision Goggle compatibility, and Airbus Helicopters’ advanced Helionix avionics suite with a 4-axis digital autopilot
The H145M is equipped with a modern digital glass cockpit, Night Vision Goggle compatibility, and Airbus Helicopters’ advanced Helionix avionics suite with a 4-axis digital autopilot

Airbus Helicopters´ responsibility includes e.g. the management and implementation of maintenance and repair activities, material supply and airworthiness. The company will locate a dedicated team at the Laupheim Air Base in Baden-Württemberg, South Germany, creating a close cooperation with the Bundeswehr technicians who will support these helicopters during their missions around the world.

«We are committed to providing high-quality, comprehensive coverage in this first full-service contract for the new H145M», said Klaus Przemeck, the Head of Airbus Helicopters’ German Military Support Center. «It will build on our track record of successful support for the EC135s used to train its pilots at the German Army Aviation School in Bueckeburg, where the fleet’s operational availability is at over 90 percent».

The twin-engine multi-role H145M is based on Airbus Helicopters’ enhanced H145 civilian and parapublic rotorcraft (previously designated the EC145 T2). In its military version, depending on customer´s configuration, the helicopter is suited to a wide range of military operations – including transportation, reconnaissance, Search And Rescue (SAR), fire support and evacuations of wounded personnel.

Airbus Helicopters completed the H145M’s on-time certification process this month, enabling further military qualification this summer and the start-up of initial deliveries to the German Armed Forces before year-end as the initial customer for this rotorcraft version.

The H145M’s power, range, endurance and payload capability provide a multitude of deployment possibilities, especially when operating in high-and-hot conditions at altitudes of 6,000 feet/1,829 m and temperatures of 95 deg. F
The H145M’s power, range, endurance and payload capability provide a multitude of deployment possibilities, especially when operating in high-and-hot conditions at altitudes of 6,000 feet/1,829 m and temperatures of 95 deg. F

With a maximum take-off weight of 3.7 metric tons/8,157 lbs, the H145M rotorcraft can be outfitted with mission equipment that includes a pintle-mounted door gun and the ability to carry weapons on external stores; electro optical/infrared sensors with targeting capability; as well as military avionics for communications, navigation and flight management.

A rope-down system is available for special operations, and overall survivability is enhanced by the H145M’s ballistic protection, its self-sealing fuel tanks, and electronic warfare self-protection against missile threats.

The H145M benefits from the robustness, low operating costs and high operational availability of Airbus Helicopters’ proven EC145/H145 family, with enhancements including Turbomeca Arriel-2E engines with dual-channel Full Authority Digital Engine Controls (FADEC), a Fenestron shrouded tail rotor, along with upgraded main and tail rotor gearboxes.

This rotorcraft’s maximum Gross Take-Off Weight (GTOW) has been increased by 50 kg/110 lbs, while its outstanding hover performance – even in One-Engine Inoperative (OEI) situations – is crucial for flight safety and mission success, especially during special operations and combat search & rescue duties.

Equipped with an incremental modular weapon system, the H145M can handle all types of operational scenarios, from conventional to asymmetric conflicts
Equipped with an incremental modular weapon system, the H145M can handle all types of operational scenarios, from conventional to asymmetric conflicts

 

Characteristics

DIMENSIONS
Length (rotor rotating) 44.72 feet/13.63 m
Fuselage length 38.35 feet/11.69 m
Height 13.12 feet/4 m
Main rotor diameter 36.09 feet/11 m
Width (blades folded) 8.89 feet/2.71 m
CAPABILITIES
Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW) 8,157 lbs/3,700 kg
Useful Load 3,900 lbs/1,769 kg
Sling load 3,307 lbs/1,500 kg
Maximum seating 1/2 pilots + 10/9 troops
ENGINE
2 Turbomeca ARRIEL 2E turboshaft engines
Maximum Continuous Power (MCP) 2×771 shp/2×575 kW
Take-Off Power (TOP) 2×894 shp/2×667 kW
2 min One Engine Inoperative (OEI) 1×1,038 shp/1×775 kW
30 sec OEI-power 1×1,072 shp/1×800 kW
PERFORMANCE AT MTOW
Speed (Vne – never exceed speed) 135 knots/155 mph/250 km/h
Fast Cruise speed (Vh – maximum speed) 132 knots/152 mph/244 km/h
Maximum range 357 NM/411 miles/662 km
Hover ceiling OGE (TOP), ISA 8,858 feet/2,700 m
Special operations teams can quickly access the aircraft thanks to its spacious cabin, which has two large sliding side doors and double clamshell doors at the rear
Special operations teams can quickly access the aircraft thanks to its spacious cabin, which has two large sliding side doors and double clamshell doors at the rear

 

MISSION VERSATILITY

  • Armed Scout
  • Special Operations
  • Light Attack
  • SAR
  • MEDEVAC/CASEVAC
  • Maritime
  • Command, Control, Communications and intelligence (C3i)

 

ROOMY CABIN

  • 10 troops capability
  • Excellent access from both sides and rear
  • Unobstructed flat floor with rails
  • Excellent exterior visibility

 

STABLE AND ACCURATE FIRING PLATFORM

  • Mission computer
  • Multi-purpose pylons with slaving and release units
  • IR/TV Electro Optic System
  • Night Vision Goggle (NVG) compatible
  • Laser range finder/designator/pointer

 

HIGH SURVIVABILITY

  • Agile, low signature
  • Ballistic Protection
  • IR Suppressor
  • Self-Sealing Supply Tanks
  • High crashworthiness (fuselage, seats and fuel cells)
  • Electronic Warfare System (EWS)
  • Redundancy

 

BALLISTIC & GUIDED WEAPONS

  • 12- or 7-tube rocket launcher
  • 20-mm cannon pod
  • 7-mm machine gun pod
  • Air-to-ground missiles
  • Growth potential for laser guided rocket

 

The H145M represents a significant addition to the German Air Force’s capabilities and offers a host of features that make it particularly well suited to missions carried out by the Special Forces Command (KSK – Kommando SpezialKräfte)

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