Tag Archives: Airbus Helicopters

The 20th and last

Airbus Helicopters and Patria, the company responsible for the local assembly of the NH90, marked the important milestone of the delivery of the 20th and last serial NH90 during a ceremony with the customer at Patria’s facility in Halli, Finland.

Airbus Helicopters and Patria, its local licensee, have delivered the 20th and final NH90 Tactical Transport Helicopter (TTH) to the Finnish Armed Forces, which have logged 7,500 flight hours on the type (Finnish Defence Forces photo)
Airbus Helicopters and Patria, its local licensee, have delivered the 20th and final NH90 Tactical Transport Helicopter (TTH) to the Finnish Armed Forces, which have logged 7,500 flight hours on the type (Finnish Defence Forces photo)

«These helicopters are used for various tasks of the Finnish Defense Forces such as national defense, international crisis management and for Search And Rescue (SAR) missions» said Jussi Ristimäki, FDF Program Manager for the NH90.

The very first flight of a Finnish NH90 took place in the Airbus Helicopters facility in Marignane in 2004 and the Finnish customer took delivery of the first NH90 in 2008. The remaining 19 helicopters were assembled by Patria in Finland. The contract was signed in 2001 for an order of 20 NH90 in Tactical Troop Transport (TTH) version for the Finnish Armed Forces and they have reached more than 7,500 flight hours since delivery.

«The delivery of this last serial helicopter is a significant milestone for the Finnish NH90 Program, and now moving forward we will concentrate on the retrofit program, which is already in progress», said Ernst Heckert, NHIndustries and Airbus Helicopters Program Manager for the Finnish NH90.

The NH90 is well suited for the severe metrological conditions in Northern Europe. Flying through the clouds causes ice to form, making the NH90’s deicing system indispensable for the Finnish winter. In addition, whiteout conditions are a common occurrence during helicopter missions in this cold climate, and clouds, fog, and snow can severely obstruct visibility. The NH90’s state-of-the art 4-axis autopilot and the fly-by-wire controls contribute to safety and maximum flight performance in such severe operating conditions. The NH90 is the first serial helicopter in the world to be equipped with Fly-By-Wire technologies, significantly reducing pilot workload and allowing for this state-of-the-art helicopter to be piloted with ease.

The twin-engine, medium-size NH90 helicopter program is managed by the consortium NHIndustries, the Company owned by AgustaWestland (32%), Airbus Helicopters (62.5%), and Fokker (5.5%).

The NH90’s integrated avionics suite and glass cockpit facilitates the crew’s control and interface with helicopter systems and the communications suite, as well as flight, navigation and mission aids. This enables an effective management for mission success and safety in all operating conditions
The NH90’s integrated avionics suite and glass cockpit facilitates the crew’s control and interface with helicopter systems and the communications suite, as well as flight, navigation and mission aids. This enables an effective management for mission success and safety in all operating conditions

 

NH90 helicopter

The NH90 – developed by Europe’s NHIndustries partnership (Airbus Helicopters, AgustaWestland, and Fokker) – was designed to meet NATO’s requirement for a modern medium-sized multi-role military helicopter for both land and maritime operations.

The common core vehicle for the Tactical Troop Transport (TTH) and the NATO Frigate Helicopter (NFH) versions is a twin-engine aircraft incorporating innovative features such as a full glass cockpit and Fly-By-Wire control system with 4-axis autopilot and advanced mission flight aids, along with on-board monitoring and diagnostics systems.

Benefitting from a modern approach to materials, the NH90’s composite fuselage has fewer parts and a lower structural weight, resulting in an endurance increase of 30% compared to a metallic fuselage, plus increased resistance to battle damage, among other benefits. The composite rotor blades have greater fatigue strength, damage tolerance and component lifetimes, as well as improved aerodynamic performance.

Benefitting from a modern approach to materials, the NH90’s composite fuselage has fewer parts and a lower structural weight, resulting in an endurance increase of 30% compared to a metallic fuselage, plus increased resistance to battle damage, among other benefits
Benefitting from a modern approach to materials, the NH90’s composite fuselage has fewer parts and a lower structural weight, resulting in an endurance increase of 30% compared to a metallic fuselage, plus increased resistance to battle damage, among other benefits

 

MAIN CHARACTERISTICS

Overall dimensions (rotors turning)
Length 64.18 feet/19.56 m
Width 53.48 feet/16.30 m
Height 17.42 feet/5.31 m
Weights
Maximum Gross Weight 23,369 lbs/10,600 kg
Alternate Gross Weight 24,250 lbs/11,000 kg
Empty Weight 14,109 lbs/6,400 kg
Useful Load 9,260 lbs/4,200 kg
Cargo Capacity
Cargo Hook 8,818 lbs/4,000 kg
Single or dual Rescue Hoist 595 lbs/270 kg
Rescue Hoist on ground 880 lbs/400 kg
Fuel Capacity
7-Cell Internal System 4,486 lbs/2,035 kg
Internal Auxiliary Fuel Tanks (each) 882 lbs/400 kg
External Auxiliary Fuel Tanks (each) 644 lbs/292 kg or 1,102 lbs/500 kg
Internal Dimensions
Width 6.56 feet/2.00 m
Length 15.75 feet/4.80 m
Height 5.18 feet/1.58 m
Volume 536.78 feet³/15.20 m³
Sliding doors opening 5.25 × 4.92 feet/1.60 × 1.50 m
Rear ramp opening 5.84 × 5.18 feet/1.78 × 1.58 m
NH90 General Performance (Basic Aircraft)
Maximum Cruise Speed* 162 knots/186 mph/300 km/h
Economical Cruise Speed* 140 knots/161 mph/260 km/h
Maximum Rate Of Climb* 2,200 feet/min/11.2 m/sec
One Engine Inoperative (OEI) Rate Of Climb 2 min Rating* 850 feet/min/4.3 m/sec
OEI Rate Of Climb Continuous Rating at 6,560 feet/2,000 m* 300 feet/min/1.5 m/sec
Hover Ceiling In Ground Effect (IGE)* 10,500 feet/3,200 m
Hover Ceiling Out of Ground Effect (OGE)* 8,530 feet/2,600 m
Maximum Range 530 NM/610 miles/982 km
Maximum Range with 5,511.5 lbs/2,500 kg payload 486 NM/559 miles/900 km
Maximum Endurance 5 h
Ferry Range (with Internal Aux Fuel Tanks) 864 NM/994 miles/1,600 km

* At 22,046 lbs/10,000 kg

The helicopters’ advanced self-protection suite is composed of a laser and radar warning receivers, a missile launch detection system and chaff/flare dispensers
The helicopters’ advanced self-protection suite is composed of a laser and radar warning receivers, a missile launch detection system and chaff/flare dispensers

Concept phase

The concept phase start-up for a new European helicopter, Airbus Helicopters’ X6, was announced on June 16 at the Paris Air Show, initiating a two-year definition period on this next-generation heavy-lift rotorcraft that will be tailored for the civil market. X6 will initially target oil and gas missions and will also be perfectly suited for Search and Rescue, VIP and other applications.

Airbus Helicopters launches X6 concept phase, setting the standard for the future in heavy-lift rotorcraft
Airbus Helicopters launches X6 concept phase, setting the standard for the future in heavy-lift rotorcraft

Major marketing, architecture and design choices for the twin-engine aircraft will be assessed to meet customer operational requirements during the concept phase, supported by a significant dialog with customers worldwide to validate the X6’s value creation for their operations.

The X6 is the newest arrival in Airbus Helicopters’ H generation, continuing on from the success of the recently unveiled H160. In line with its company-wide transformation, Airbus Helicopters continues to live up to the excellence of the Airbus name and sets its ambitions looking forward.

«X6 will be for the heavy segment in the next decade what the H160 is today for the mediums. It will set new standards in the industry not only for design, but for its production strategy as well, as we will rely on the industrial capacities of our core countries, including the upcoming pillar in Poland», explained Guillaume Faury, the President & CEO of Airbus Helicopters. «Our objective is to bring to the market the most efficient helicopter solutions adapted for how our customers’ needs and the industry itself will evolve in the future».

In defining and developing the X6, Airbus Helicopters will build on its reputation as a recognized leader in the industry, resulting in a next-generation, twin-engine rotorcraft that is mature and all-weather ready – including full de-icing – from the first delivery. One of the major innovations to be integrated on X6 is the Fly-by-Wire flight control system.

As the latest program to benefit from Airbus Helicopters’ long history of innovation and expertise, the X6 will share commonality features with the company’s latest rotorcraft – including the new H175 and H160. As one of the key-programs for the coming decades, the X6 also will maintain Airbus Helicopters’ leadership in the oil and gas sector.

Once adequate program maturity has been achieved in the concept phase, a subsequent development phase will follow, leading to an X6 entry into service anticipated in the 2020s.

 

H160’s first flight

Airbus Helicopters’ highly innovative H160 flew for the first time in Marignane on Saturday, 13 June, shortly after beginning its ground runs end of May. The aircraft flew for about 40 minutes in ground effect that allowed the flight test team to check the overall behavior of the aircraft and to verify the measurements.

The first prototype of Airbus HC’s new H160 helicopter has begun flight tests, with two more prototypes to follow; service introduction is scheduled for 2018 (Airbus HC photo)
The first prototype of Airbus HC’s new H160 helicopter has begun flight tests, with two more prototypes to follow; service introduction is scheduled for 2018 (Airbus HC photo)

«The first flight was very promising in terms of stability, vibrations, and sound levels», said Olivier Gensse, the flight test pilot, upon landing the Airbus aircraft. The flight test campaign has now been launched and the next flights will begin to open the flight envelope progressively. The new aircraft already reached 130 knots/150 mph/240 km/h during the second flight on Wednesday, 17 June.

«We are very proud that the H160 has reached another milestone on time», said Bernard Fujarski, head of the H160 program. «The dedication of the team working on the program has paid off and we are all looking forward to the final development phase to bring this highly anticipated helicopter to the market».

In order to complete this final development phase and to ensure the H160’s entry into service in 2018, Airbus Helicopters is relying on three dedicated prototypes and two helicopter zero integration test means. The first prototype will pursue its flight test campaign, including its first hot weather flight tests planned for this summer. The second Airbus prototype performed its first power-on 12 June.

Airbus Helicopters has renamed its product range replacing the former «EC» designation with an «H»
Airbus Helicopters has renamed its product range replacing the former «EC» designation with an «H»

The H160 opens a new chapter in the history of Airbus Helicopters. Joining the product range between the H145 (formerly EC145) and the H175 (formerly EC175), this innovative medium helicopter becomes the first new member of the H generation.

The entire design was based on one overriding goal: to create added value for customers in terms of performance, economic competitiveness, safety and comfort. Both cleaner and quieter, the H160 takes a step forward in respect for the environment.

Configurations being developed include offshore transportation, business and private aviation, public services, and commercial passenger transport. The H160 was unveiled at the Heli-Expo trade show in March 2015.

 

Three months after its introduction to the public at the Heli-Expo air show in Orlando, Florida, UAS, and following its first ground run on May 28, the H160 has now successfully performed its first flight in Marignane on Saturday, 13 June

 

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)

Polish Caracal

Airbus Helicopters and its partner Heli Invest Services welcome the decision of the Polish Ministry of Defence to pre-select the H225M Caracal from Airbus Helicopters. According Polish Ministry of National Defense, after verification of the operational needs of the Armed Forces, and in particular taking into account the possibility of further use of the Mi-17 helicopters no in service over the next decade, it was decided to buy 50, instead of the 70 it originally planned. The deal is estimated to be worth $3 billion.

The high load capacity and easy cabin access of the H225M, combined with fast cruise speed, long range and in-flight agility make this aircraft the perfect tactical transport helicopter for troops and cargo
The high load capacity and easy cabin access of the H225M, combined with fast cruise speed, long range and in-flight agility make this aircraft the perfect tactical transport helicopter for troops and cargo

In recent years, Poland has proven its technological and industrial capacity with a highly skilled workforce and impressive resources. The country has become an established and internationally recognised industry leader, supplying parts for the full range of Airbus aircraft. Airbus Group’s sourcing from Poland amounts to around €191 million, including aerostructures, systems and services, and the Company employs a local workforce of 850 highly skilled employees.

Poland is among the few countries continuously maintaining and reinforcing its military power. It has a vibrant economy, a growing GDP and stable political system, as well as engineering expertise supported by long-term investment plans.

Airbus Helicopters’ H225M (former EC725) Caracal project has the potential to significantly accelerate the integration of the country’s aerospace and defence industry in Airbus Group’s value chain. Together with substantial research and technology development investments, transfer of technology and engineering capabilities, this project is aimed at laying the basis for a joint and mutually beneficial future.

In this context of Poland’s multirole military helicopter acquisition, the Polish Ministry of Defence has already pre-selected the H225M Caracal. Airbus Helicopters and its partner Heli Invest Services are now preparing for the next steps of the tender process.

Airbus Group’s ambition is to partner Poland and have the country play a much bigger role in Europe’s defence industry. The Group aims to widen its industrial presence in the country, going far beyond low-cost or mono-product partnerships by further opening its Divisions in a structured and lasting relationship.

Its large cabin and heavy-lift performance enables the rotorcraft to carry up to 29 troops/personnel in cabin seats, or up to 20 troops/personnel on energy-absorbing wall-mounted seats
Its large cabin and heavy-lift performance enables the rotorcraft to carry up to 29 troops/personnel in cabin seats, or up to 20 troops/personnel on energy-absorbing wall-mounted seats

 

H225M Caracal

Designed for the most demanding missions, the H225M’s reliability and durability have been demonstrated in combat conditions and crisis areas that include Lebanon, Afghanistan and Mali, while also supporting NATO-led operations in Libya. As the latest member of Airbus Helicopters’ military Super Puma/Cougar family, this 11-metric-ton helicopter, previously named the EC725, is ready for multiple missions.

As a true multi-role platform, the H225M enables military forces to deploy wherever and whenever needed. Operating both from ships and land, this helicopter has an all-weather capability – including flight in icing conditions – supported by state-of-the-art night vision goggle compatibility.

The helicopter’s outstanding 700 nautical mile range is extended with air-to-air refueling, which can be performed while in forward flight and during hover.

Powered by two latest-generation engines, the H225M’s five-blade rotor provides an exceptionally low vibration level, and the modular design of rotor mechanical assemblies allows for easier maintenance.

This new generation helicopter also features significant advances in terms of man-machine interface ensuring the most important information arrives to the pilot for the most effective decision making process
This new generation helicopter also features significant advances in terms of man-machine interface ensuring the most important information arrives to the pilot for the most effective decision making process

The H225M is equipped with state-of-the-art avionics and communication systems that reduce crew workload while enhancing mission capability and safety. Airbus Helicopters has incorporated significant advances in terms of man-machine interface, ensuring the most important information arrives to the pilot for the most effective decision-making process.

The flight crew has at their fingertips all navigation and piloting data from the electronic flight instruments in the glass cockpit, including dual-channel full-authority digital engine control for the H225M’s two Turbomeca turboshaft engines.

Airbus Helicopters’ renowned 4-axis, dual-duplex autopilot provides outstanding precision and stability and enables flight in search and rescue patterns as well as automatic approaches in Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) procedures.

Unrivalled redundancy is provided in key onboard systems to maintain full functionality, including the dual-duplex Automatic Flight Control System (AFCS), dual-engine Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) with backup; five LCD electronic flight instruments; and two Vehicle Monitoring Displays, among other features.

For cargo transport missions, the H225M’s high-density cabin floor accommodates a sizeable internal load, while the maximum external load sling capacity is 4,750 kg
For cargo transport missions, the H225M’s high-density cabin floor accommodates a sizeable internal load, while the maximum external load sling capacity is 4,750 kg

Using the proven military heritage of Airbus Helicopters’ Puma and Super Puma rotorcraft, the H225M was conceived with survivability in mind. Its airframe has reinforced structural main frames and is equipped with high energy-absorbing landing gear, along with self-sealing and crashworthy fuel tanks.

Cockpit protection is provided by armored and energy-absorbing crew seats, while the cabin can be equipped with armor plating in the floors and walls or fitted with armor-plated carpets. The rotor blades’ multi-box construction enhances their resistance to bullet impacts.

Contributing to the H225M’s survivability is a radar-warning receiver, missile approach warning system, and chaff/flare dispensers. The engine exhausts can be fitted with infrared suppressors, with protection against sand and ice provided by inlet design and with installable filters.

The H225M carries a strong «punch» when called on, ready for everything from front-line missions to critical logistics support. Qualified armament includes a 7.62-mm machine gun in the forward cabin windows; along with 180-round 20-mm gun pods and 19-tube 2.75-inch/70-mm rocket launchers.

External dimensions
External dimensions

Included in the mission avionics are a flight management system with Doppler, GPS satellite navigation and SAR (Search And Rescue) modes; a digital moving map; a personal locator system; a loud speaker and a searchlight, among others.

From home base to the most remote locations, Airbus Helicopters conceived the H225M with maintainability in mind.

The Turbomeca Makila 2A1 turboshaft engines are of modular design for easy maintenance, and Airbus Helicopters’ Spheriflex fiberglass main rotor head is easy to adjust. The airframe includes a built-in step to access the engines.

Overall maintenance information is provided through the integrated HUMS (Health Usage Monitoring System).

Able to take off in less than five minutes, followed by high-speed cruise, the H225M reaches the scene rapidly, and is ready for a quick return to base when the assignment is completed
Able to take off in less than five minutes, followed by high-speed cruise, the H225M reaches the scene rapidly, and is ready for a quick return to base when the assignment is completed

 

Characteristics

CAPACITY
Troop transport 2 pilots + 1 chief of stick + 28 seats
VIP transport 2 pilots + 8 to 12 passengers
Casualty evacuation 2 pilots + up to 11 stretchers + 4 seats
Sling load 4,750 kg/10,472 lbs
EXTERNAL DIMENSIONS
Length 16.79 m/55.08 feet
Width 3.96 m/13 feet
Height 4.60 m/15.09 feet
WEIGHT
Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW) 11,000 kg/24,251 lbs
MTOW in external load configuration 11,200 kg/24,690 lbs
Empty weight 5,715 kg/12,600 lbs
Useful load 5,285 kg/11,651 lbs
Maximum cargo-sling load 4,750 kg/10,472 lbs
Standard fuel capacity 2,247 kg/4,954 lbs
ENGINES 2 TURBOMECA MAKILA 2A1
Take-off power per engine 1,567 kW/2,101 shp
PERFORMANCE AT MAXIMUM GROSS WEIGHT, ISA*, SL**
Maximum speed (Vne***) 324 km/h/175 knots
Fast cruise speed (at MCP****) 262 km/h/142 knots
Rate of climb 5.4 m/s/1,064 feet/min
Service ceiling (Vz = 0.508 m/s = 100 feet/min) 3,968 m/13,019 feet
Hover ceiling OGE***** at ISA*, MTOW, take-off power 792 m/2,600 feet
Maximum range without reserve at Economical Cruise Speed 909 km/491 NM
Endurance without reserve at 148 km/h/80 knots >4 h 20 min

* International Standard Atmosphere

** Sea Level

*** Never Exceed Speed

**** Mode Control Panel

***** Out of Ground Effect

 


Caracal & Tiger in tandem Airbus Helicopters

The quietest helo’s
on the market

Less than twelve months after its corporate rebranding, Airbus Group Australia Pacific has delivered an advanced, multi-mission H145 helicopter. The delivery of this first H145 to the Australia Pacific region culminates a program preparing the helicopter to its new owner’s requirements, with aircrews and technical support teams in New Zealand and Germany working to deliver the helicopter, which replaces the customer’s earlier model EC145.

Powerful multi-role helicopter, the H145 combines advances cockpit design, modern avionics, 4-axis autopilot and the Fenestron tail rotor
Powerful multi-role helicopter, the H145 combines advances cockpit design, modern avionics, 4-axis autopilot and the Fenestron tail rotor

Commenting on the H145’s delivery to its New Zealand customer, Dr. Jens Goennemann, Managing Director Airbus Group Australia Pacific said, «We are delighted to see the arrival of the first H145 in this region. It’s yet another example of our customers acknowledging that Airbus offers the latest in rotary-wing technology, enhanced mission capability and flexibility».

Designed to deliver excellent performance throughout the flight envelope, the H145 was certified last year as the latest member of Airbus Helicopters’ 4-tonne-class, twin-engine product range, incorporating a package of state-of-the-art technologies that reinforce the family’s reputation as the quietest helicopters on the market.

This quietness is achieved by utilising an enclosed Fenestron tail rotor and an automatic variable rotor speed control system, which, together, produce significantly reduced external sound levels while boosting payload, range and speed.

Compact in size but with a spacious cabin that can accommodate one pilot and ten passengers, the H145’s small noise footprint, range and speed make it the aircraft of choice for a variety of civil missions. The class-leading H145 will be touring Australia and New Zealand during May and June 2015.

Earlier this year, Airbus Helicopters announced new «H» designations to replace the former corporate identity «EC» across its civil and military product lines, symbolising the company’s full integration in the Airbus Group and consistent with the numbering used by the Airbus commercial jetliner manufacturer.

Main missions: Emergency Medical Services (EMS); Law enforcement; Offshore transportation; Private & Business Aviation (PBA)
Main missions: Emergency Medical Services (EMS); Law enforcement; Offshore transportation; Private & Business Aviation (PBA)

 

Airbus H145

Maximum Take-Off Weight:    3,650 kg/8,047 lbs (All configurations)

Useful load:                                         1,731 kg/3,816 lbs

Capacity:

1 pilot + up to 11 passengers;

2 pilots + 10 passengers

Maximum cargo sling load:        1,500 kg/3,307 lbs

Engine:                                                   2 Turbomeca ARRIEL 1E2, turboshaft engines, FADEC*

Maximum emergency power (OEI):  800 kW/1,072 shp

Fast cruise speed:                            30 knots/150 mph/241 km/h

Range:                                                     819 km/442 NM

Endurance:                                           4 h 35 min

* Full authority digital engine (or electronics) control

 


H145 Presentation AirbusHelicopters

 

Light Armed Helicopter

Airbus Helicopters will join with Korea Aerospace Industries in developing two 5-ton class rotorcraft that meet South Korea’s requirements for its next-generation Light Civil Helicopter (LCH) and Light Armed Helicopter (LAH). As the LCH and LAH competition winner, Airbus Helicopters will continue its highly successful relationship with Korea Aerospace Industries, including the joint program that developed Korea’s Surion twin-engine utility helicopter.

Airbus Helicopters’ Dauphin family rotorcraft – on which the LAH and LCH are based – have been delivered to more than 60 customers, with over 1,000 of these helicopters logging nearly five million flight hours in service
Airbus Helicopters’ Dauphin family rotorcraft – on which the LAH and LCH are based – have been delivered to more than 60 customers, with over 1,000 of these helicopters logging nearly five million flight hours in service

«We would like to express our deep gratitude to Korea Aerospace Industries and the South Korean government for entrusting us with this major helicopter program», said Airbus Helicopters President Guillaume Faury. «We are committing our full support in ensuring the LCH and LAH projects will be completed on time, on cost and to specification».

Both the LCH and LAH aircrafts will be based on Airbus Helicopters’ H155 (formerly known as the EC155) – the latest evolution of its best-selling Dauphin family, which includes the Panther military and parapublic variants that have demonstrated their capabilities in operation around the world. As part of the new commitment, Airbus Helicopters will transfer the company’s technical know-how – as already demonstrated in the Surion program – to ensure Korea is able to develop its newest indigenous products, which will become leading next-generation light rotorcraft in the 5 metric ton weight category.

«The LCH and LAH programs will build on our collaboration with Korea Aerospace Industries on the Surion, which has become a reference in successful rotorcraft collaboration. By continuing our relationship, we will significantly reduce the risks of these two new development programs, while meeting all of the mission requirements», added Faury. The LCH version is expected to enter service in 2020 while the service introduction of the LAH is targeted for 2022.

Norbert Ducrot, Airbus Helicopters’ Head of North Asia, expressed confidence of the program’s success, which will see parallel development of both the civilian and military versions. «Not only do we have a strong partnership with Korea Aerospace Industries, we have also a proven track record of continued civil and military developments on which the two partners will capitalize for these two programs», he stated.

The H155 features the same digital four-axis autopilot that Republic of Korea pilots have come to appreciate when flying the Surion, and ensures outstanding hover performance in extreme conditions, along with highly accurate settings for altitude, speed and heading
The H155 features the same digital four-axis autopilot that Republic of Korea pilots have come to appreciate when flying the Surion, and ensures outstanding hover performance in extreme conditions, along with highly accurate settings for altitude, speed and heading

 

Airbus H155

Maximum Takeoff Weight:     4,920 kg/10,846 lbs

Useful load:                                       2,301 kg/5,073 lbs

Capacity:                                            2 pilots + 13 passengers

Maximum cargo sling load:      1,600 kg/3,527 lbs

Engine:               2 Turbomeca Arriel 2C2, turboshaft engines, FADEC*

Maximum emergency power (OEI**) :  785 kW/1,053 shp

Fast cruise speed:                          278 km/h/173 mph/150 knots

Range:                                                  905 km/489 NM

Endurance:                                        4 h 42 min

* Full Authority Digital Electronic Control

** One Engine Inoperative

Airbus H155's cockpit
Airbus H155’s cockpit

German helo’s fleet

The German Ministry of Defense will next week submit to the Bundestag the helicopter procurement package it has renegotiated with Airbus HC, which covers 168 NH90, MH90 and Tiger helicopters at a cost of €8.7 billion, said the Defense-Aerospace.com. Thus, the first major arms deal concluded by Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen is much more expensive than it is expected before.

Tiger helicopter – the most accurate and lethal on the market
Tiger helicopter – the most accurate and lethal on the market

Precisely, that is about 430 million euros more than the Ministry of Defense’s previous plan, concluded in 2013 by Leyen’s predecessor Thomas de Maizière. The extra cost is due to the cost of spare parts and equipment for the so-called «Sea Lion» – MH90 naval helicopter, which was not included in the previous plan. These are the main points that emerge from a confidential submission by the Ministries of Finance and Defence to the Budget Committee of the Bundestag, and obtained by the Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA) news service and Spiegel Online.

Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen wants to end the long-running dispute over new helicopter procurement. This deal would be a first milestone of her term of office. Starting with the promise to clean up the chaotic field of armaments, she is renegotiating existing contracts. The new deal, although «not optimal», was «the best achievable result», according to an MoD staffer, who pointed out that the new MH90 Sea Lion helicopters are more capable than the naval NH90s which were originally planned.

According to the draft agreement, manufacturer Airbus Helicopters will receive 8.7 billion euros in payment for a total of 168 Tiger, NH90 and MH90 Sea Lion helicopters. That is about 240 million euros more than the 8.46 billion euros originally planned for 202 helicopters. The reduction in the number of helicopters was decided by Maizière as part of the Bundeswehr reform in 2011. Other weapons systems were also reduced, and negotiations were launched with several manufacturers.

The NH90 NFH is the most modern and the best naval helicopter in its class
The NH90 NFH is the most modern and the best naval helicopter in its class

The deal now agreed with Airbus calls for the following changes to the original contract:

  1. 68 instead of 80 Tiger combat helicopters for €3.55 billion instead of €3.77 billion. Only 40 Tiger will actually be used by the Bundeswehr, the others (older models already delivered) are to be used as spare parts.
  2. 82 instead of 122 NH90 transport helicopters for €3.77 billion instead of €4.69 billion.
  3. The Navy will also receive 18 MH90 (new designation) Sea Lions with special equipment for €1.38 billion.

The bottom line is that Airbus will deliver fewer helicopters (168) for more money, so instead of savings the new deal will bring additional costs. This is because, unlike her predecessors, von der Leyen has included the cost of technical support in her calculations.

Green Party MP Tobias Lindner says the Ministry has still failed in its reform. He says the Minister could have obtained more in her negotiations with Airbus: «Ursula von der Leyen has renegotiated de Maizière’s global deal, and though it has been renamed it is not substantially corrected». Overall, it remains «a bad and questionable deal, and anyone who found that the framework agreement of two years ago was bad, cannot approve this new deal».

The Budget Committee of the Bundestag is expected to decide next week on the helicopter deal, and German media consider it is highly likely that Bundestag will agree with the governing coalition’s plan.

NH90 TTH – a troop transport of up to 20 fully equipped troops
NH90 TTH – a troop transport of up to 20 fully equipped troops

Helicopters to Poland

According to Jaroslaw Adamowski, DefenseNews.com correspondent, Poland’s Ministry of Defense has obtained three offers in its much-awaited tender to acquire some 70 new helicopters for the country’s armed forces. The bidders include:

  • Airbus Helicopters;
  • Sikorsky;
  • PZL-Swidnik – a Poland-based subsidiary of AgustaWestland.
Airbus Helicopters EC-725 Caracal (also named Super Cougar)
Airbus Helicopters EC-725 Caracal (also named Super Cougar)

«The next phase of the tender will be to perform an analysis of the submitted documents by the commission which is carrying out this procedure, and to select the best offer and test the helicopter», Col. Jacek Sonta, the spokesperson for the Defense Ministry, said in a statement.

A consortium led by Airbus Helicopters is offering the EC-725, while Sikorsky wants to supply its S70i Black Hawk, and AgustaWestland is offering the AW-149.

The Airbus Helicopters EC-725 Caracal (also named Super Cougar) is a long-range tactical transport helicopter developed from the Super Puma/Cougar family for military use. It is a twin-engined aircraft and can carry up to 29-seated troops along with 2 crew, depending on customer configuration. The helicopter is marketed for troop transport, casualty evacuation, and combat search and rescue duties, and is similar to the civilian EC-225.

The Sikorsky S-70i Black Hawk is an international military version assembled by Sikorsky subsidiary, PZL-Mielec in Poland. It was developed for the U.S. Army in the 1970s, winning a competition to be designated the UH-60 Black Hawk and spawning a large family in United States military service. New and improved versions of the UH-60 have been developed since. Civilian versions and some military versions of this medium transport/utility helicopter are produced under various S-70 model designations.

S-70i Black Hawk is an international military version assembled by Sikorsky subsidiary, PZL-Mielec in Poland
S-70i Black Hawk is an international military version assembled by Sikorsky subsidiary, PZL-Mielec in Poland

The AgustaWestland AW149 is a medium-lift military helicopter being developed by AgustaWestland. On 20 June 2011, AgustaWestland announced the AW189, a civilian development of the AW149, for service in 2013.

The new helicopters are designed to replace the Polish military’s Soviet-designed Mil Mi-8, Mi-14 and Mi-17 old helicopters.

Local newspaper Rzeczpospolita reported that the planned deal is estimated to be worth up to 10 billion zloty ($2.8 billion).

According to the ministry, the helicopters are to be supplied in three variants, including:

  • Multi-Task Transport;
  • Search-And-Rescue;
  • Anti-Submarine.

«Following the signature of an offset deal, it will become possible for us to sign a contract for the delivery of the helicopters. Under the plan, this will happen in the second half of 2015», Sonta said.

Deliveries are scheduled for 2017 to 2022.

The AgustaWestland AW149 is a medium-lift military helicopter
The AgustaWestland AW149 is a medium-lift military helicopter

Crouching Tiger

Airbus Helicopters has completed official delivery of the first two Tiger helicopters in the new HAD-E version (Helicoptero de Apoyo y Destrucción, Support and Destruction Helicopter) for the Spanish Army Airmobile Force (FAMET), said Gloria Illas, Airbus Helicopters España.

Tiger HAD-E version (Helicoptero de Apoyo y Destrucción, Support and Destruction Helicopter)
Tiger HAD-E version (Helicoptero de Apoyo y Destrucción, Support and Destruction Helicopter)

As for the combat helicopters, Tiger deliveries belong to the new HAD-E version, which offers numerous advantages compared to the HAP-E Tigers (Hélicoptère d’Appui Protection, Support and Escort Helicopter) currently in service: a new MTR390-E (Enhanced) turboshaft with 14% more power, an improved optronic vision system, Spike air-to-ground missiles, an Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) system coupled with an interrogator and a new electronic warfare and countermeasure system.

The Spanish Army purchased a total of 24 of these helicopters. To date, six HAP-E version Tiger helicopters have been delivered to the Attack Helicopter Battalion. Their satisfactory deployment in Afghanistan during 2013 represents an important milestone for this helicopter.

Tiger HAD-E
Tiger HAD-E

 

CHARACTERISTICS

 

Main Assets

Length (rotor rotating):                                                          15.82 m (51.90 ft)

Fuselage length:                                                                          13.85 m (45.43 ft)

Rotor diameter:                                                                           13.00 m (42.85 ft)

Height:                                                                                               3.84 m (12.60 ft)

Width:                                                                                                4.53 m (14.85 ft)

Disc area:                                                                                         133 m² (1,430 ft²)

 

Typical characteristics

Maxi Take-Off Weight (MTOW) – ISA (International Standard Atmosphere), SL (Sea Level):                                           6,600 kg/14,553 lb

Engine 2 × MTR 390 – Step 1-5:                                    1,092 kW/1,464 shp

Super contingency power (One Engine Inoperative):           1,322 kW/ 1,774 shp

Standard fuel capacity:                                                        1,105 kg/2,435 lb

Standard fuel capacity + external fuel tanks:         1,689 kg/3,723 lb

 

Performances

Fast cruise speed at MTOW, SL:                                     271 km/h/146 kts

Mission duration (standard):                                             2 h 30 min

Maximum endurance with external fuel tank:        5 h 00 min

Max range «armed» with standard fuel tanks:        400 NM/740 km

Max range «not armed» with external fuel tanks: 610 NM/1,130 km

 

Flight envelope

Operating temperature:         – 30°C to ISA + 35°C

Service ceiling:                              -500 m to 4000 m/-1,640 ft to 13,123 ft

Tiger HAD-E with 70 mm unguided rockets (up to 52 rockets)
Tiger HAD-E with 70 mm unguided rockets (up to 52 rockets)

 

Typical configurations

Attack

4 Air-to-Air Mistral

+ 8 Hellfire or Spike

+ 30 mm turreted gun

 

Ground

68 rockets 68 mm

or

52 rockets 70 mm

+ 30 mm turreted gun

 

Attack

2 Air-to-Air Mistral

+ 4 Hellfire or Spike

+ 34 rockets 68mm

or

26 rockets 70 mm

+ 30 mm turreted gun

 

Armed Reconnaissance

4 Air-to-Air Mistral

+ 44 rockets 68 mm

or

38 rockets 70 mm

+ 30 mm turreted gun

 

Air-to-Air combat

4 Air-to-Air Mistral

+ 30 mm turreted gun

 

Armament

30 mm turret-mounted gun (Nexter 30M781)

Total Ammunition capacity:

450 rounds;

Rate of fire: 750 rounds per minute;

Bursts: 5/10/25 bullets;

Azimuth: +/-90°;

Elevation: +28°/-25°

Optimized firing domain:

ATG (Air-To-Ground): up to 1,500 m;

ATA (Air-To-Air): up to 1,000 m

30 mm turret-mounted gun (Nexter 30M781)
30 mm turret-mounted gun (Nexter 30M781)

 

Rockets

Versatile 68 mm or 70 mm unguided rocket system (change of rocket type without change of any fixed part on helicopter)

68 mm (up to 68 rockets):

2 inner launchers of 22 rockets;

2 outer launchers of 12 rockets

70 mm (up to 52 rockets):

2 inner launchers of 19 rockets;

2 outer launchers of 7 rockets

Firing Control for:

rocket inner pods elevation;

sub-ammunition ejection delays;

rocket types

Growth potential for laser guided rockets

 

Missiles

Air-to-Air Mistral Missile:

Off boresight capability;

Multicell seeker;

2 × 2 missiles (outer launchers);

Range = up to 6000 m

Air-to-Ground missiles

Hellfire (laser guided):

2 M299 launchers × 4 missiles;

Range = 8000 m;

Self-designation or Collaborative designation;

Locked Before Launch (LOBL) or Locked After Launch (LOAL)

Spike ER:

2 × 4 missiles;

Range = 8000 m;

(Fire-and-follow) with electro-optical or fiber optics technologies

Tiger HAD-E (Spanish Army Airmobile Force)
Tiger HAD-E (Spanish Army Airmobile Force)