Southern Utah University (SUU) has signed a purchase agreement with Bell Textron for a B505 Jet Ranger X. The aircraft will be added to SUU's fleet of helicopters for student training.
The university offers training in rotor wing pilot or fixed wing pilot components. These tracks share a common core of general education and general aviation core courses. SUU Aviation is a university flight training programme in Cedar City, Utah with the largest collegiate helicopter fleet in the nation and the most robust flight training capabilities.
“We are proud to offer our students of the Professional Pilot Aviation Program at SUU with one of the market's newest and most technologically advanced short light single aircraft,” comments SUU Aviation executive director Mike Mower. “We've conducted training using a Bell 206L for several years so adding the Bell 505 to our fleet is the logical decision that will allow us to offer advanced pilot and technical training for the industry's future aviators.”
SUU's additional special curriculum courses include Turbine Transition, External Load, Night Vision Goggles, Mountain Flying, SFAR 73 Transition, and both Single Engine and Multi Engine fixed wing training. It offers pilot licences and ratings for Private Pilot, Instrument Rating, Commercial Pilot, Certified Flight Instructor, Certified Flight Instructor Instrument.
“As the industry faces a shortage of fixed and rotor wing pilots, it is critical to offer safe, high quality education like SUU's Professional Pilot Aviation training programme,” explains Greg Maitlen, regional sales manager, Bell, North America. “The Bell 505 is the only aircraft in its class that offers operations at 22,500 feet density altitude and will be instrumental in training requirements, specifically the mountain flying course.”
With a speed of 125 kts and a useful load of 1,500 pounds (680 kg), the Bell 505 is designed to be safe and easy to fly while providing significant value to the operator. The customer-driven design of the aircraft places safety, performance and affordability at the forefront, blending proven systems with advanced technology and a sleek, modern design.