Airbus Helicopters is introducing an upgraded version of its H145 twin this week at Heli-Expo 2019. Scheduled for EASA certification in early 2020, the improved model will feature a new five-blade, bearingless main rotor system; two Safran Arriel 2E engines with Fadec; four-axis autopilot with the Helionix digital avionics suite; and an integrated wireless airborne communication system (wACS).
Cumulatively, the improvements will give the H145 an increased useful load of 330 pounds and boost maximum takeoff weight to 8,377 pounds. Airbus Helicopters CEO Bruno Even said the improvements emanated from customer feedback “over the years about the aircraft.” Deliveries will begin later in 2020, he said, adding that the upgrade will be offered as a retrofit for legacy H145 aircraft.
The new rotor system provides a useful load equivalent to the H145’s empty weight, reduces maintenance requirements, improves reliability, and shrinks overall rotor disk diameter, allowing the aircraft to operate in more confined areas. The wACS wireless communications system will enable real-time data transmission from the helicopter facilitating live health and usage monitoring. Airbus Helicopters is displaying the H145 at its Booth (C305).