Eurocopter exhibits upgraded Ecureuil

 - June 18, 2007, 10:20 AM

The new Eurocopter AS 355 NP Ecureuil on display here at Le Bourget will shortly be delivered to the first customer, Scandinavian Helicopter Group. The Swedish operator uses its fleet of rotorcraft mainly for passenger transport and aerial work.

The upgraded variant of the light twin helicopter features Turbomeca Arrius 1A1 engines with a new high-pressure turbine. This translates into improved one engine inoperative (OEI) performance. Moreover, the new main gearbox has been derived from that of the AS 350 B3. This enables the helicopter to increase its maximum takeoff weight with sling load by 440 pounds.

Next to the AS 355 NP are two Super Pumas–one civil EC 225 and one military EC 725. The EC 225 on display is the first one to be delivered into China. The Ministry of Communications will use it for search and rescue missions. The French Army’s EC 725 usually operates special missions in Afghanistan.