Bristow Group raised its total firm orders for Airbus Helicopters’ H175 to 17, and also signed a comprehensive support services agreement for its new seven-metric-ton-category rotorcraft.
H175 is the new name of the twin-engine EC175. Airbus Helicopters announced at the Heli-Expo 2015 helicopter industry trade show in Orlando, Florida, the renaming of its products to be aligned with the naming of Airbus products overall.
This significant H175 endorsement was formalized during a signing ceremony on the company’s booth. It expands upon Bristow’s initial order agreement, announced two years ago.
“I issued a challenge to the industry at Helitech a few months ago,” said Jonathan Baliff, president and CEO of Bristow Group. “As Bristow purchases helicopters in larger volumes, we look to partner with aircraft manufacturers who will step up to more comprehensive airline-style purchase and support agreements. We commend Airbus Helicopters for being the first partner to proactively share risk and responsibilities and commit to work closely with Bristow throughout the entire lifecycle of aircraft ownership.”
Based in Houston, Texas, Bristow is a leading provider of helicopter services to the worldwide offshore energy industry. Its current inventory of Airbus Helicopters-built rotorcraft includes the lightweight H125 (formerly the AS350), H135 (EC135) and BK117, along with the medium H155 (EC155) and heavy AS332 and H225 (EC225) Super Puma versions.
Deliveries of the H175s will be from October 2016, with these helicopters to be deployed by Bristow on oil and gas airlift duties.
“Airbus Helicopters and Bristow share a long history together, and I am very grateful to open this new chapter in our partnership. Their order underscores the H175’s position as a rotorcraft of choice for oil and gas operations, which offers a cost-effective solution with excellent operational performance, passenger comfort and safety,” said Airbus Helicopters President Guillaume Faury. “Additionally, the new support services agreement with Bristow further underscores our customer support focus for the highest levels of fleet serviceability, backed by the full resources of Airbus Helicopters across the globe.”
The H175 is the world’s newest super-medium, twin-engine helicopter, bringing new levels of operational flexibility, performance and safety to a full range of mission applications. Since its entry into service for North Sea offshore operations only one week following the first delivery of this helicopter in December 2014, the fleet has performed more than 400 flight hours with availability rates of nearly 90 percent.
The H175 has been certified to the latest airworthiness standards, covering both the rotorcraft and the new Airbus Helicopters-developed Helionix avionics suite, providing increased safety through reduced pilot workload, enhanced situational awareness, improved flight envelope protection and system redundancy.
The H175 is well suited to a full range of missions, including airlift duties in oil and gas operators, search and rescue, emergency medical services, public services, VIP and executive transport. Its range enables 16 passengers in an oil and gas-configured H175 to be transported up to distances of 140 nm., with the range approaching 200 nm when 12 passengers are carried. Contributing to the H175’s competitive edge is its recommended cruise speed of 150 kts., while the maximum cruise speed exceeds 165 kts, all achieved at extremely low vibration levels.