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SHG and Europavia first in line for latest EC130
Scandinavian Helicopter Group (SHG) and Europavia are among the first customers to place an order for the latest T2 variant of the EC130 helicopter.

Scandinavian Helicopter Group (SHG) and Europavia are among the first customers to place an order for the latest T2 variant of the EC130 helicopter.

Long-standing Eurocopter operator SHG has signed a letter of intent to purchase nine. Its parent company, Laroy Flyg has been operating aerial works since 1976, and currently uses the AS350B3 exclusively.

With more than 50 years of experience, Europavia is a Eurocopter distributor for helicopters and spare parts in Switzerland. The company has ordered the first two EC130 T2 aircraft for the Swiss market: one in transport passenger configuration and one utility. Europavia also provides all maintenance, repair and warranty work via Swiss Helicopter Maintenance and TUAG.

While retaining the EC130's existing external lines, approximately 70 per cent of the EC130 T2's airframe structure has been modified. New and updated features include the use of a more powerful Arriel 2D engine and upgraded main gearbox; the incorporation of an active vibration control system; improved air ventilation, distribution and demisting systems; a cabin interior structure redesign with a full flat floor; a cockpit update for enhanced man-machine interface; new energy-absorbing seats that improve weight and balance for passenger loading; integration of a crashworthy fuel tank; and increased maintenance accessibility for electrical and air conditioning systems.

Optional features on the EC130 T2 include a new-generation air conditioning unit, tinting of the helicopter's wrap-around windshield, and a right-hand sliding passenger door. The air conditioning system features design optimisation for improved performance, effective hot/cold temperature control, and better air distribution. Derived from the system on Eurocopter's EC175 seven-ton class helicopter, it uses a simple control box with straightforward operating logic similar to climate control units on automobiles.

Future development for the EC130 T2 includes the integration of a new glass cockpit design utilising dual-screen electronic flight displays matched to a Garmin GPS/ NAV/COMM receiver (currently GNS series to be expanded to GTN series). This advanced glass cockpit solution will be available as well for the AS350 B3e helicopter and will be developed through the American Eurocopter subsidiary in the United States and installed with a supplemental type certificate.

Also planned for future development on the EC130 T2 is a 1,500 kg cargo swing for an aerial work/utility configuration, and the availability of Eurocopter's Stylence interior.

Final assembly of the initial series production aircraft began last December, and by the second half of 2012, production will transition completely to the EC130 T2 version.

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