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.
On 25 January 2007, the 2006-built Eurocopter EC135 T2+ c/n 0532 was registered PH-MAA with ANWB Medical Air Assistance
and the aircraft arrived in the Netherlands on 23 February 2007. The PH-MAA is one of five EMS-helicopters operated by ANWB
Medical Air Assistance and used first for crew training and as a spare aircraft for maintenance cover of the lifeliners.
The four lifeliner 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.
At the moment Eurocopter EC135 T2+ c/n 0811 PH-HVB is the spare aircraft.
When needed for maintenance, ADAC Luftrettung can give the MAA back-up service with Eurocopter EC135 P2
On 15 October 2014, Eurocopter EC135 T2i PH-MAA was seen at Amsterdam
Heliport when in service as "Lifeliner 1". Eurocopter EC135 T2+ PH-MAA is equipped with the new newly developed inlet barrier filter (IBF)
to increase the life time of the engines and reduce maintenance costs. The filter box is directly mounted on the engines inlets; the IBF is
externally clearly visible by the black surface.