Photo credit © Airbus Helicopters

Airbus Helicopters has won the support contract to maintain, overhaul and ensure the availability of the German Army Aviation School’s fleet of EC135 training helicopters. This extends the existing contract, signed in 2005, by a further seven years.

“At the core of the Airbus Helicopters full service contract is ensuring that on virtually every working day, eleven EC135 aircraft are available on the airfield for training purposes. This puts the fleet’s operational availability at over 95 percent,” explained Ralf Barnscheidt, Head of the Military Support Center in Germany. “A team of technicians that is constantly on-site at the Bückeburg location as well as our specialist maintenance center in Kassel-Calden provide technical and logistical support, carry out throughlife maintenance and even large-scale repair work, and are responsible for ensuring the mission readiness of the helicopters.” Barnscheidt added, “We’re delighted that the Bundeswehr has once again chosen to put its faith in us, building on what is now 15 years of fruitful collaboration on the EC135.”

Colonel Uwe Klein, commander of the German Army Aviation School and General in the German Army Aviation Corps, stated that “Airbus Helicopters submitted the most cost-effective bid for the service contract – one that is perfectly tailored to the requirements of the German Army Aviation School – and we look forward to continuing our collaboration. The on-site teams do tremendous work: We can always count on the helicopters we need being available for each and every training session – even for night flights – so that our people have to perform just the pre-flight check.”

The German Army Aviation School in Bückeburg trains some 70 future Bundeswehr pilots using a total of 14 EC135 aircraft, which log about 6,000 flight hours a year. Over the course of twelve months, student pilots learn how to fly a helicopter under visual flight rules and also qualify in IFR and sensor flight in low-altitude night flight.