Airbus Helicopters has received EASA certification for the power upgrade of its single-engine H125 helicopter. While the maximum take-off weight of the aircraft remains unchanged, its external and internal load lifting capabilities are increased for a large part of the flight domain (by up to +140 kg), while the hover ceiling OGE at maximum take-off weight is increased by more than 1,500 ft (up to 12,600 ft). Announced at Heli-Expo last year, this major evolution increases the aircraft’s power by up to 10% by making full use of the available power of the existing Safran Helicopter Engines’ Arriel 2D.
“It is our ambition to continuously improve our products and bring further competitive advantages to our customers”, said Axel Aloccio, Head of Light Helicopters Programme. “The extra power offered by this major upgrade represents a 10% to 20% payload increase for a typical aerial work mission versus the aircraft’s current lifting capabilities and confirms the superiority of the H125 in terms of payload and value for money”.
The H125 (previously named the AS350 B3e) is a single-engine light utility helicopter originally designed and manufactured in France by Aérospatiale and Eurocopter (now Airbus Helicopters). The H125 is a member of Airbus’ rugged and proven Ecureuil (AS350, AS355, AS550, AS555, H125, H125M, EC130, H130) family. The helicopter outclasses all other single-engine helicopters for performance, versatility, low maintenance, and low acquisition costs, while excelling in high and hot and extreme environments.
This extra power will be included as a standard feature, at no additional cost, on all new-built H125s delivered from September 2021 onwards. A retrofit solution consisting of a VEMD software upgrade, available from Thales via an in-shop retrofit or standard exchange, will also be available for all H125s already in service within the EASA region by the end of April 2021. With more than 4,000 helicopters in service with about 1,500 global customers and 28.5 million accumulated flight hours, the H125 continues to lead the single engine helicopter market in all mission segments thanks to its high performance and multi-mission capacity.