2008-03-02 - EC175 debut at Heli-ExpoEurocopter unveils its brand-new EC175 at Heli-Expo 2008
Mock-up des neuen 7-Tonnen-Hubschraubers vorgestellt<br /> At 11.30 AM on the opening day of this year's Heli-Expo, February 24, Eurocopter lifted the veil off a brand-new member of its helicopter family: the EC175 .
The full-scale mock-up was highlighted on the company's booth. Eurocopter is now introducing its 16-passenger civil product to the market. Two first launch partners were present at the unveiling ceremony. They are: Bristow Group (USA) and VIH Aviation Group (Canada). Eurocopter will announce further customers during the show.
The development of the EC175, a joint program with China, is on schedule. In a two-year timeframe, starting from the contract signature on December 5, 2005, followed by the approval of the Preliminary Designed Review on December 5, 2006 and the acceptance of Critical Design Review on December 5, 2007 the design has been frozen. Production of the first prototype is launched. The maiden flight is scheduled for 2009, EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) type certification is expected for 2011.
Powered by two Pratt & Whitney PT6C-67E engines with new generation FADEC and to be certified for dual pilot IFR operations, the EC175 features state-of-the-art technologies such as four-axis digital Automatic Flight Control System (AFCS), glass cockpit and avionics suite, a five-bladed Spheriflex main rotor and crashworthy airframe. The EC175 has been designed to have a very low vibration level, with a blade design issued from the EC155's and EC225's successful experience. Particular attention is being paid to minimize internal and external noise. The target is to be the quietest in its class, far below the latest ICAO standards. The EC175 will also be the most eco-friendly aircraft in its category, emitting the least pollution per transported passenger.
Eurocopter encountered a tremendous success at the world's most important Helicopter Exhibition, Heli-Expo 2008 in Houston, for its brand-new EC175, after it lifted the veil off its new 7 ton class helicopter on the first day of the Show. Eurocopter signed intentions to buy with 13 different customers during the 3 days of Heli-Expo for a total of 111 units, confirming the huge demand for such a helicopter. Eurocopter also reached outstanding bookings for the rest of its range with 120 orders, marking its continued success in extremely active North American and international markets.
The official launch customers plus other major operators who decided spontaneously during the show for this new helicopter, brought the total number of commitments towards this brand new aircraft to 111 units. These come from across the globe, including Europe: Utair (Russia), Bond (UK), Dancopter (Denmark), Heli-Union (France), NHV (Belgium); USA (ERA and Halvorson Group); Mexico (Pegaso); Asia-Pacific: Global Vectra (India), HNZ (New-Zealand). All these customers intend to use the EC175 mainly for offshore oil and gas missions as well as SAR operations.
The majority of the 120 orders concerning the rest of the product range came from customers based in North America (90 from US customers and 28 from Canadian customers, including eight options), where excellent market growth has been experienced. These orders included: 43 helicopters to be used primarily for emergency evacuation and law enforcement missions; 21 helicopters for corporate and VIP use; 49 helicopters for various operators active in the tourist and utility sectors; 7 helicopters to serve the oil and gas industry.