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Eurocopter EC135
PH-EMS German Army 82+64
Eurocopter EC130 B4
D-HIPT Airbus Helicopters EC135 P1 c/n 0109 - ADAC-Luftrettung "Christoph 70" - Flugplatz Jena-Schöngleina in Germany - 28 July 2005 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 EC 135 is offered with either Turbomeca Arrius 2B2 or Pratt and Whitney Canada PW206B2 engines. 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. In 1996, the EC135 went into series production by Eurocopter Deutschland in Donauwörth, Germany. After German certification was granted on 14 June 1996, the first customer delivery was on 31 July 1996. Next to the EC135 a special military version was developed designated the Eurocopter EC635. Over 1200 EC135 airframes have been delivered since the helicopter entered service in 1996. The ICAO Aircraft Type Designator for the EC135 helicopters is EC35.

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.

RTH (Rettungstransporthubschrauber) EC135 P1 D-HIPT "Christoph 70" was photographed at the helipad of the ADAC-Luftrettungszentrum Jena. This Air Rescue Station is situated at the airfield Jena-Schöngleina in Germany and was opened in June 2005. Until June 2005 the helicopter of the Air Rescue station was located in a temporary hangar at Jena-Schöngleina. Operations of the Air Rescue station Jena started on 8 June 1994. First a Bell UH-1D of the German Army was used. In January 1996, the ADAC-Luftrettung GmbH took over the flying operations. The 1999-built EC-135P1 c/n 0109 was registered in July 1999 as D-HIPT and delivered to the ADAC Luftrettung GmbH. The callsign "Christoph" is used for the German lifeliner helicopters since 1970 and is derived of Saint Christophorus, the Patron Saint for all travellers. In October 2011, Eurocopter EC135 P1 D-HIPT was sold to Western Power Distribution for their WPD Helicopter Unit. After maintanance by ADAC Luftfahrt Technik at Bonn-Hangelar, the helicopter was registered G-WPDA with South Western Helicopters trading as WPD Helicopter Unit, Bristol, UK, on 12 January 2012.

page last updated: 21-01-2014
Copyright © Jack Wolbrink, Emmen, the Netherlands

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