In a brief ceremony Wednesday afternoon on the Heli-Expo show floor, Rolls-Royce (Booth No. 5222) signed a multi-engine contract to deliver its RR300 light turboshaft powerplant for installation on the Scott’s-Bell 47GT-6 light utility helicopter.
“We have the commitment to ship them their first flight-test engine by June,” Rolls-Royce helicopters senior vice president Greg Fedele told AIN. “We’re really excited about this next step on the path toward production of the Scott’s-Bell 47.”
The engine maker noted that only very minor alterations to the RR300 were required for installation in the legacy Bell 47 airframe, with no changes to the engine’s core architecture. Introduced in 2007, the RR300 also powers the Robinson R66 light turbine helicopter.
Scott’s-Bell 47 president and owner Scott Churchill said the RR300 offers “a perfect fit for the 47, and with its already proven in-service record, we believe the 47GT-6 with the RR300 engine will be a very successful combination.”
The Scott’s-Bell 47 contract also demonstrates the company’s commitment to building the lighter end of its product range. Another step toward that mission, also announced during Heli-Expo, is the recent consolidation of the company’s civil helicopter engine support operation with the Rolls-Royce Defense Operations Center in Indianapolis.
Fedele emphasized the advantages of having fleet support for the M250 and RR300 under one roof, with support personnel able to benefit from direct interaction with their counterparts in other markets.
“We have more than 16,000 civil helicopter engines flying around the world,” he added. “We’ve taken the lessons learned from supporting our large military fleets, so that everybody–from a large fleet to a single-ship operator–all get the same level of service and the best support possible to keep them flying.”