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Eurocopter EC135
PH-EMS German Army 82+64
Eurocopter EC130 B4
D-HHTS Airbus Helicopters EC135 P2 c/n 0381 - ADAC Luftrettung "Christoph Europa 2" - Rotterdam Airport in Holland - 31 May 2008 more lifeliner helicopters

The Airbus Helicopters EC135 is a lightweight five/seven seat twin-turbine-engine multi-role helicopter with a radius of 720 km. The EC135 is offered with either Turbomeca Arrius 2B2 or Pratt and Whitney Canada PW206B2 engines. A militarized version called the EC 635 has been developed from the EC 135. Development of the Eurocopter EC135 started in the 80s as the MBB Bo.108 Advanced Technology Helicopter. The prototype BO108 with conventional tail rotor flew first on 15 October 1988. When the helicopter divisions of MBB from Germany and Aerospatiale from France merged in January 1992 to form the Eurocopter Group, the Bo108 program was transferred as well. An advanced low noise ducted 10-blade Fenestron tail rotor was, next to other modifications, incorporated into the design and the name of the helicopter was changed into Eurocopter EC135. The prototype of the EC135 (D-HBOX s/n S-01) flew first on 15 February 1994 and went into series production in 1996 at Donauwörth. After German certification was granted on 14 June 1996, was the first customer delivery on 31 July that year. Next to the EC135 a special military version was developed designated the Eurocopter EC635. Over 1300 EC135 airframes have been delivered since the helicopter entered service in 1996. The ICAO Aircraft Type Designator for the EC135 helicopters is EC35. In March 2015, Airbus Helicopters renamed its entire product line to better reflect its closer allignment with ist parent company and simplify the naming convention for the portfolio. Therefore, the EC135 T3/P3 has been renamed as “H135” as stated in revison No.EASA.R.009 Issue: 07 of the Type Certificate Data Sheet for EC135 dated 18 March 2015.

As a result of the merger between the Eurocopter parents Aérospatiale-Matra; DaimlerChrysler Aerospace (DASA) and Construcciones Aeronàuticas Sociedad Anonima (CASA) in July 2000, the Eurocopter group became a division of the new formed EADS (European Aeronautic Defence and Space company). Taking off into 2014, EADS was rebranded as "Airbus Group". Uniting all its activities under a single brand, its helicopter division Eurocopter was rebranded as Airbus Helicopters on 8 January 2014.

On 31 May 2008, Eurocopter EC135 P2 D-HHTS was seen at the helipad of the helistation of "Lifeliner 2" at Rotterdam Airport in the Netherlands. The EC135 P2 D-HHTS replaced at that time EC135 T2 PH-ULP as "Lifeliner 2". MMT (Mobil Medical Team) "Lifeliner 2" is based at Rotterdam Airport and uses also the helideck of the Erasmus MC in Rotterdam. The 4 EMS-helicopters in the Netherlands are: "Lifeliner 1" in Amsterdam, "Lifeliner 2" in Rotterdam; "Lifeliner 3" at Volkel AFB near Nijmegen and "Lifeliner Europe 4" in Groningen. ANWB Medical Air Assistance operates, next to the four lifeliner helicopters, Eurocopter EC135 T2+ PH-HVB for crew training and as a spare aircraft for maintenance cover of the lifeliners. When needed for maintenance, ADAC Luftrettung gives the MAA back-up with EC135 P2 D-HHIT and/or EC135 P2 D-HHTS. The 2005-built Eurocopter EC-135 P2 D-HHTS was registered in Germany on 26 January 2005 and handed over to the ADAC Luftrettung GmbH on 28 January 2005. EC135P2 D-HHTS is used to operate as "Christoph Europe 2" stationed at the ADAC-Luftrettungszentrum Rheine, Germany. Callsign "Christoph" is used for the German lifeliner helicopters since 1970 and is derived of Saint Christophorus, the Patron Saint for all travellers. On 26 December 2009, EC135 P2 D-HHTS "Christoph Europe 2" was damaged in a hard landing at the helideck of Universitätsklinikum Münster. The helicopter had to be transported by road to Bonn-Hangelar for repairs by ALT. Since 2012, the D-HHTS is equipped with the new Inlet Barrier Filter (IBF).

page last updated: 17-04-2015
Photo Copyright © Henk Wadman, Schiedam, the Netherlands

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