Airbus Helicopters, June 01, 2016 - Berlin – Today, Airbus Helicopters and WIKING Helikopter Service GmbH signed a contract for two H145s in offshore configuration at the international aerospace exhibition ILA in Berlin, making them the first Airbus Helicopters products to be added to their WIKING Helikopter Service GmbH’s fleet.
The delivery of the first H145 is scheduled for the end of the year. Both rotorcrafts will be used for the transfer of harbour pilots to ships and service technicians to offshore wind farms as well as for air rescue missions over the North Sea.
“We’re glad to have signed the order today. The H145 perfectly meets our requirements regarding operations over the sea“, says Alexander von Plato, director of WIKING Helikopter Service GmbH “At the beginning of this year, during an offshore demonstration we were convinced of the advantages of the new Helionix cockpit of the H145 and its 4-axis autopilot with auto-hover function. Moreover, the machine offers high performance reserves as well as a large interior, and it satisfies our strict safety requirements for the transfer of persons over the sea”, says Holger Stockmeyer, director of WIKING Helikopter Service GmbH.
By increasing the engine performance in single-engine operations (Single Engine Hover Performance, two minutes OEI HOGE), the H145 can now bear up to 200 kilograms more payload during winch operations. Thus, the aircraft fulfills the strict regulations for transporting people by winch (HEC - Human External Cargo). Furthermore, the H145 in offshore configuration is equipped with an emergency floatation system, certified for Sea State 6, weather radar, helicopter emergency egress lighting system and an automatic deployable emergency locator transmitter. The H145 in its offshore seating configuration can transport up to eight passengers. The combination of compact external dimensions, a comparatively small rotor diameter and the largest interior in its class make the H145 highly suitable for offshore operations.
“The H145 has already proven its reliability with our clients in many missions around the world – during air rescue missions, with the police, with the special forces of the Armed Forces or as a helicopter for VIPs with Mercedes Benz Style design“, explains Wolfgang Schoder, CEO of Airbus Helicopters Germany. “The lowest maintenance costs and acoustic levels, which are almost 50% below the required limit, also contribute to this success”, Schoder continues.
WIKING Helikopter Service GmbH focuses on the transfer of sea pilots via helicopters in all weather conditions all year round. The rope winch of the H145 with its adjustable arm and a capacity of 270 kg is perfectly suited for those requirements. The second field of activity of the company includes air rescue operations over the sea, so called Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS), e.g. in wind parks in the German Bight. The aircraft are fitted out with intensive care medical equipment and staffed with one doctor and a rescue assistant. Both the aircraft and the staff are ready to respond to any emergency in an extremely short time. Moreover, the helicopters are used in the field of offshore windfarming in order to transport and hoist service technicians to wind power stations. During this operation, the H145 transports with two pilots, up to six technicians.
The H145 is the most advanced member of its family. The worldwide customer fleet has already accumulated more than 18,000 flying hours since the first delivery in July 2014 with an average availability of over 90 per cent. Today, some 60 helicopters are already serving in 14 nations. 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 been an offshore specialist in the North and Baltic Sea areas for over 40 years and operates eight helicopters Sikorsky S-76, AgustaWestland A109S grand and AW139. Originally founded to support the transfer of harbour pilots in the German Bight, WIKING is still one of the most important systems in this business, having flown more than 54,000 transfers without an accident. Furthermore, WIKING is largely involved in the supply of offshore institutions, mainly in the offshore wind industry. In the past year, more than 22,000 passengers were brought to platforms and construction ships. Since 2012, WIKING and ADAC operate a HEMS helicopter for the workers in the offshore wind industry at the JadeWeserAirport on 24 hours a day.