H145 Demonstrates Ability for Offshore Missions
Airbus Helicopters demonstrates the H145/EC145T2 in offshore missions to German operators Wiking Helikopter Service GmbH and HTM Helicopter Travel Munich GmbH
Airbus Helicopters, February 05, 2016 - Sande/Wilhelmshafen, Germany – The twin-engine multipurpose helicopter H145 has successfully proved its operational capabilities for challenging offshore missions.
During a two-day flight trial in late January the established offshore operators Wiking Helikopter Service GmbH and HTM Offshore were able to test the H145 in all the relevant fields of offshore operations.
Both aviation companies collaborate closely to offer their customers a wide range of offshore services involving light and heavy helicopters. This concept is very appreciated in the offshore-wind-branch.
“One of our main activities is the transfer of harbour pilots via helicopter in any kind of weather conditions 24/7,” explains Lars Hilgert, Chief flight coordinator at WIKING. “Harbour pilots navigate ships safely in and out of German harbours. In most cases these pilots are brought onto the moving ships using the winch. This process requires the utmost attention of the helicopter’s pilot and crew,” he added. “We are very positively surprised with the intuitive Helionix® cockpit of the H145 and its 4-axis autopilot with auto-hover function. These systems contribute to the helicopter’s high levels of safety in every scenario. At the same time the workload of the crew is reduced, allowing them to safely accomplish their mission even in the harshest of weathers,” Hilgert adds.
The rotorcraft is also well-suited for Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS). “Our rescue helicopters are constantly on stand-by for offshore HEMS. Every unit is staffed with a doctor and an assistant and ready to embark on a mission in a minimum amount of time. The H145 would qualify perfectly for these missions, given that it features tremendous levels of performance and a spacious cabin”, explains Alexander von Plato, Managing Director at WIKING Helicopter Service.
The flight test programme also included other missions such as approaching the wind park alpha ventus in the German Bight, landing on the transformer platform and hoisting technicians onto the offshore wind turbines. All while sustaining winds of up to 50 kts, the H145 delivered a convincing performance.
“HTM Offshore is specialised in the transfer of service personnel in the wind industry,” says Bernd Brucherseifer, Managing Director at HTM Offshore. “The technicians are increasingly used for scheduled and unscheduled maintenance missions on wind turbines, for instance if the turbine is not, or hardly accessible by ship due to rough waters. With wind parks emerging increasingly further away from the coastline we are reliant on a versatile but also efficient helicopter fleet. The H145 would be an ideal addition to our 11 Airbus Helicopters H135, as it can carry more passengers and travel for longer distances. Despite its spacious cabin the main rotor has a very small diameter, making it perfectly suited for approaching wind turbines.”
The H145 is the most advanced member of its family. The worldwide customer fleet has already accumulated more than 11,500 flying hours since the first delivery in July 2014 with an average availability of over 90 per cent. Today, some 53 helicopters are already serving in 14 nations in emergency medical services, law enforcement, military and VIP and cargo transport. The variant for the oil & gas sector was also ordered recently. With a maximum take-off weight of 3,700 kg, the H145 also allows a very efficient usage in the emerging offshore business, which will display a considerate growth over the coming years. Airbus Helicopters expects the market to develop a potential of up to 9bn € over the next two decades.
About WIKING Helikopter Service GmbH: WIKING Helikopter Service GmbH has over 40 years as a specialist in offshore flights in the North and Baltic Seas. Currently operates eight Sikorsky S-76, AgustaWestland A109S Grand and AgustaWestland AW139 helicopters. Originally founded as support for the Seelotsenversatz in German waters, Wiking is today still one of the main offshore supports for ships with sea pilots and has now performed over 54,000 accident-free flights. In addition, Wiking has grown strong in the supply of offshore facilities for the offshore wind industry were they transported over 22,000 passengers last year to platforms and ships. Since mid-2012 Wiking mantains a HEMS helicopter ready as an emergency plan for employees of the offshore wind industry at JadeWeser Airport (EDWI) in a 24/7 basis in coordination with ADAC air rescue.
About HTM Helicopter Travel Munich GmbH: HTM Helicopter Travel Munich GmbH is one of the largest mixed fleeting AOC holders in Germany. HTM has its own EASA Part 145 maintenance facility and an Approved Training Organization, full approved for IFR, Offshore and Helicopter Hoist Operations. Founded in 1997 by Hans Ostler in Munich, HTM operates 21 helicopters and 4 business jets from eight bases and is about to expand further. HTM is offering a wide variety of services such as VIP Transport Helicopter and Fixed Wing, Offshore Operations, Helicopter Hoist Operations (On- and Offshore), External Load Operations, Movie Flights with own equipment pool, Transport of Dangerous Goods and Flight Training.
Airbus Helicopters H145 / EC145T2 D-HYAP ( Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH )