Airbus Helicopters, June 26, 2014 - Kuala Lumpur - Newly delivered AS350 B3e and EC135 T2e to kick-start company’s operations in untapped market segment
The delivery of Airbus Helicopters‟ initial two rotorcraft to Aerial Power Lines Sdn Bhd (APL) will enable this Malaysian operator to offer competitive solutions for electrical power line construction, maintenance and surveillance – furthering the country‟s evolution as a developed nation.
Provided to APL during a ceremony today at the Airbus Helicopters Malaysia subsidiary in Subang were an AS350 B3e and EC135 T2e, which are the evolved versions of the manufacturer‟s workhorse single-engine AS350 Ecureuil family and its popular twin-engine EC135 product line.
APL is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sarawak Cable Berhad (SCABLE), and the only company approved by the Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia to perform aerial power line operations in the country.
In developing its services plan, APL implemented a strategic alignment with Airbus Helicopters and the French national electrical grid operator, Réseau de Transport d'Électricité (RTE). This enables the Malaysian company to benefit from its two partners‟ extensive expertise in aerial power line development, monitoring and maintenance – upholding the operational and safety standards that are benchmarked by both the European Aviation Safety Agency and the Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia airworthiness authorities.
“Our aerial power line solutions represent a well thought-out business strategy, applying tested technologies and procedures from RTE and Airbus Helicopters in France that have been used and improved by them for the past 40 years,“ explained Dato Sri Mahmud Abu Bekir Taib, the Chairman of Sarawak Cable. “We believe the introduction of such solutions will add to the impetus of Malaysia becoming a fully-developed nation by the year 2020.”
In addition to the AS350 B3e and EC135 T2e provided today, APL will take delivery of an EC225 in mid-2015. The operator has a full maintenance contract with Airbus Helicopters, and also is receiving training from the manufacturer. Additionally, APL‟s rotorcraft will be hangared at Airbus Helicopters Malaysia‟s facility which is located in the Malaysian International Aerospace Centre in Subang.
“We welcome APL as a new customer, which can count on Airbus Helicopters‟ full commitment in providing the complete spectrum of support and services to ensure their successful foray into a brand new market segment in Malaysia,” said Pierre Rossignol, Managing Director of Airbus Helicopters Malaysia.
“We are honoured to be APL‟s selected partner in pioneering the use of helicopters for power grid management and operations in this part of the world, where we foresee significant potential for its expansion across Malaysia and within the region,” he added.
The helicopters selected by APL cover the light- and heavy-weight segments of Airbus Helicopters„ product line, thus enabling them to carry out a wide range of power line missions. Its AS350 B3e is the high-performance member of the Ecureuil light helicopter family. With its proven performance in hot conditions and at very high altitudes, this helicopter type is often used for power line inspections.
The evolved twin-engine EC135 T2e has a maximum takeoff weight increased up to 2.95 metric tons, offering a 40-kg. gain in payload and allowing an extra passenger to be carried with a load margin extension. It is widely used for visits to power lines, aerial construction and maintenance. In the 11-ton category, the EC225 integrates the latest technological innovations for more power, increased payload and longer range, and is suited for a wide variety of services, such as maintenance and construction work on overhead electrical power lines and airlift support at major infrastructure projects.
About Aerial Power Lines: Aerial Power Lines Sdn Bhd (APL) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sarawak Cable Bhd (SCABLE). A listed company in Bursa Malaysia, SCABLE‟s business portfolio includes fabrication of steel towers and hot-dip galvanized products, manufacturing of power cables, wires & conductors, construction of transmission lines and mini-hydro power plant. APL was specially incorporated to manage and operate helicopters for power line operation and other related aviation businesses.