Bell increases operational flexibility of Bell412EPI
Oct. 7, 2013, Fort Worth, Tx. - Bell Helicopter today announced an upgrade program to one of the company’s newest and most versatile helicopters – the Bell 412EPI.
By Carey Fredericks
The upgrade will increase the operational flexibility of the rotorcraft to meet the future regulatory and mission needs of the industry. The program will focus on further testing and improvements of the rotorcraft’s Category A certification to provide increased operational flexibility for CAT A Part B procedures with respect to elevated heliports as well as the use of circular and rectangular elevated heliports.
“The Bell 412 is already the backbone of mission-critical helicopter operations around the world, which is why we are working closely with our customers to make sure we best meet their constantly evolving needs,” said Danny Maldonado, executive vice president for sales and marketing at Bell Helicopter. “The Bell 412 fleet has already logged more than 4.5 million flight hours while consistently demonstrating its reliability in challenging environments, but these upgrades will give our customers the increased operational flexibility and expanded mission capabilities needed to take on even more demanding missions in the future.”
The upgrade program will commence in November 2013 with the first completion scheduled for first quarter 2014, which will allow for the first commercial deliveries of the rotorcraft next year to include the benefits of this continued product investment.
The Bell 412EPI, first introduced in March 2013, improves the Bell 412EP platform with the Bell BasiX Pro fully integrated glass flight deck, which provides critical flight information at a glance for greater situational awareness and safety. The Bell BasiX Pro system features four 10.4" high resolution LCD primary/multi-function display units for vital flight information in an easy-to-scan layout. The system is specifically designed to meet the requirements of twin-engine helicopters and is optimized for IFR, Category A and JAR OPS3 compliant operations. The avionics suite also includes high resolution digital maps, electronic charts and approach plates, ADS-B transponder and optional HTAWS and XM satellite links. The new Bell 412EPI also incorporates the power of Pratt & Whitney’s PT6T-9 Twin Pac engines that provide 15 percent more horsepower than the standard Bell 412 and the BLR Strake and FastFin system, which modifies the tailboom to optimize airflow and improve handling, safety and lift.