The Eurocopter 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. 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. Over
900 have been delivered since the helicopter entered service in 1996 with the German rescue company DRF - Deutsche
RTH (Rettungstransporthubschrauber) Eurocopter EC135 T2+ D-HZSE of the
Bundesminsterium des Innern / Katastrophenschutz was photographed at the
helipad of the Bundeswehrkrankenhaus Hamburg in Germany when in service
as "Christoph 29". On 16 July 1973, operations of "Christoph 29"
started in the Hamburg area as "SAR Hamburg 71", when the
Bundeswehrkrankenhaus in Hamburg got a
Dornier Bell UH-1D medical
helicopter. The UH-1D Iroquois was flown by the Luftwaffe (German Air Force), first by 2.Staffel des Hubschraubertransportgeschwader 64 (HTG64),
and later by 2.Staffel des Lufttransportgeschwader 63 (LTG 63). Until 19 January 2006, the military Dornier Bell UH-1D SAR /
Notartz helicopter was the standard machine of RTH "SAR Hamburg 71". On
19 January 2006, the military UH-1D was replaced by a Bell 212 of the
BMI - Bundesministerium des Inneren, o/b Bundespolizeifliegerstaffel Nord.
The call sign "SAR Hamburg 71" changed in that time to "Christoph 29".
On 4 July 2007, the Bell 212 was replaced by the new BMI - Bundesministerium des Inneren' Eurocopter EC135
T2+. As the Bell 212, the EC135 T2+ "Christoph 29" is flown by the Bundespolizeifliegerstaffel Nord.
Call sign "Christoph" is used for the German lifeliner helicopters since 1970 and is derived of Saint
Christophorus, the Patron Saint for all travellers.
On 31 January 2007, the BMI - Bundesministerium des Inneren (German Ministry of the Interior) took delivery of the
first pair of a total of sixteen EC135T2+ air rescue helicopters for the BBK - Bundesamtes für Bevölkerungsschutz und
Katastrophenhilfe. The EC135 T2+ air rescue helicopters will replace the ageing
MBB Bo.105 helicopters in service.
Eurocopter Germany used test-registration D-HECJ for the 2007-built Eurocopter EC135 T2+ c/n 0558. In August 2007,
the EC135 T2+ was registered D-HZSE with BMI - Bundesministerium des Inneren. Eurocopter EC 135 T2+ D-HZSE
entered service first as “Christoph 13” at the air rescue station in Bielefeld-Rosenhöhe on 20 August 2007.