Rolls-Royce Joins With Heli-Lynx AS355 Upgrades

Matt Nicholls
May 29, 2007
Rolls-Royce has reached an agreement with Heli-Lynx Helicopter Services to upgrade Eurocopter AS355 aircraft. Heli-Lynx of Ontario has received Transport Canada and FAA Supplemental Type Certificates and has begun upgrading the light-twin aircraft with new Rolls-Royce Model 250-C20R turboshaft engines.

The new engines are available from Heli-Lynx as part of a valuable package of electrical and airframe upgrades with engine control modifications known as the ‘355FX’ conversion.  Each Model 250-C20R has 450 shp and the upgrade will enable a significant increase in allowable gross weight for the helicopters.  The first two aircraft to be upgraded with new engines have been delivered to customers and two additional aircraft are undergoing modifications.

The overall market for light-twin helicopters is con- sidered strong, especially in Europe. The worldwide fleet of AS355 helicopters numbers about 600 air- craft.  Heli-Lynx is continuing its development of the 355FX program offering three models, the 355FX1, 355FX2 and 355FX3. The latter is currently under flight testing to increase the single-engine perform- ance and to take advantage of the power and performance increase of the Model 250-C20R engine. This includes developing new single- and twin-engine flight performance charts that includes a gross weight increase. 

Heli-Lynx expects to demonstrate the 355FX3 version later this year in Europe and elsewhere around the world.  In total, nearly 30,000 Model 250 engines have been produced, with approximately 16,000 remaining in service. It remains one of the highest-selling engines made by Rolls-Royce. Photo courtesy of Rolls-Royce

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