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Introduction

Eurocopter Group was created in 1992 with the merger of the rotorcraft divisions of Aerospatiale (France) and Deutsche Aerospace (Germany). In January 2014, the company was rebranded Airbus Helicopters, opening a new chapter in its history.

2015

H160 PT2

  • January 1, 2015: Airbus Helicopters’ products adopt new names. The letters EC are replaced by the letter H.

  • January 14, 2015: Airbus Helicopters fleet surpasses the 10 million flight hour milestone in service with the oil and gas sector

  • February 19, 2015: Airbus Helicopters opens new design office in Łódź, Poland to expand Research & Development activities.

  • March 3, 2015: Airbus Helicopters unveils the new H160

  • March 6, 2015: Airbus Helicopters launches the HCare services offer

  • June 16: Airbus Helicopters launches X6 concept phase, for the future in heavy-lift rotorcraft

  • June 23, 2015: Airbus Helicopters opens new Training Academy in Donauwörth

  • October 30, 2015: Airbus Helicopters sets up final assembly line in China in cooperation with Sino-German Ecopark

  • November 4, 2015: Airbus Helicopters and Korea Aerospace Industries affirm partnership for export and support of Korean helicopter platforms: Korean-made Light Civil Helicopter and Light Armed Helicopter to be marketed worldwide.

  • November 10, 2015: Airbus Helicopters starts flight tests with high-compression engine as part of the European Clean Sky initiative.

  • November 17, 2015: Airbus Helicopters Industries in Brasov, Romania officially launches and will assemble the new H215 (former AS332 C1e/L1e)
  • 2014

    Airbus Helicopters sign


    • January 1, 2014: Eurocopter becomes Airbus Helicopters. The rebranding marks a new era in the history of the company as it joins Airbus and Airbus Defense & Space within the new Airbus Group.

    • January 27, 2014: The EC175 is certified by the European Aviation Safety Agency.

    • February 28, 2014: The latest member of the Super Puma family is unveiled: the multi-mission AS332 C1e utility workhorse version.

    • March 25, 2014: Airbus Helicopters and China’s Avicopter sign joint production agreement for 1,000 EC175/AC352 helicopters.

    • April 14, 2014: Airbus Helicopters launches Japan’s first helicopter full flight simulator, the EC135 P2+.

    • April 17, 2014: The newest member of Airbus Helicopters’ proven EC145 rotorcraft family – the EC145 T2 – is certified.

    • May 15, 2014: Airbus Group delivers 300th on-time, on-budget UH-72A Lakota helicopter to U.S. Army.

    • May 21, 2014: The BO105 clocks up 8 million flight hours, demonstrating the reliable service of this aircraft worldwide over 40 years.

    • June 17, 2014: The first “built-in-Brazil” EC725 is provided to the Brazilian Navy.

    • June 19, 2014: Airbus Helicopters’ X3 entered the French national Musée de l’Air et de l’Espace (Air and Space Museum) of Paris-Le Bourget.

    • June 25, 2014: The 200th NH90, a TTH (Tactical Transport Helicopter), was delivered by NHIndustries to Belgian Defence.

    • July 7, 2014: The EC175 Level D full-flight simulator receives airworthiness certification from EASA and enters service.

    • July 31, 2014: The delivery of the first EC145 T2 is made to German operator DRF Luftrettung.

    • October 21, 2014: EASA certifies the new EC135 T3, completing a new chapter in the EC135’s history.

    • November 27, 2014: The new lightweight military multi-role helicopter, the EC645 T2, completes its first flight.

    • December 2, 2014: Airbus Helicopters Training Services completes the instruction of its 50,000th trainee.

    • December 9, 2014: The EC135 T3/P3 enters service with Italian operator Aiut Alpin Dolomites in high-altitude rescue operations.

    • December 10, 2014: Airbus Helicopters works with operators to develop industry’s first Flight Crew Operating Manual (FCOM) for EC225s used for oil & gas missions.

    • December 11, 2014: A double-handover ceremony marks first deliveries of the EC175 to NHV for oil and gas missions.

    2013


    • January 23, 2013: The first NH90 to be assembled by Eurocopter España at its facility in Albacete takes flight.

    • February, 14, 2013: Eurocopter grows in Mexico with the inauguration of a production center for high-technology aircraft components.

    • March 5, 2013: Eurocopter launches the EC135 T3/P3 members of its enhanced helicopter family with orders from the U.S., Norway and Italy.

    • March 12, 2013: EADS appoints Guillaume Faury new CEO of Eurocopter as Lutz Bertling departs the Group.

    • April 18, 2013: The Eurocopter Corporate Foundation takes flight. The new philanthropic organization will support humanitarian causes and help the needy.

    • April 25, 2013: Eurocopter completes unmanned EC145 demonstration flights, validating ability to integrate unmanned flight capabilities into its helicopter family.

    • May 14, 2013: Eurocopter opens its new Systemhaus helicopter development center at Donauwörth, Germany.

    • June 11, 2013: Eurocopter's X3 hybrid helicopter makes aviation history in achieving a speed milestone of 255 knots during level flight.

    • June 13, 2013: Helisim celebrates the 100,000th hour milestone for flight simulator sessions with international customers.

    • June 20, 2013: Eurocopter breaks ground for new Paris-Le Bourget industrial site.

    • September 12, 2013: Donauwörth offers first Helipad in Europe with improved safety landing conditions.

    • September 23, 2013: It is announced that in 2014, the Airbus Helicopters plant in Columbus, Mississippi will be upgraded to a final assembly and test site for Eurocopter AS350 helicopters.

    • November 6, 2013: Airbus Helicopters' X3 hybrid helicopter makes aviation history achieving a speed record of 255 knots during level flight.

    2012


    • January 1, 2012: The Eurocopter Group celebrates its 20th anniversary.

    • January 12, 2012: The first enhanced AS350 B3e helicopters is delivered by Eurocopter Vostok to Russian operator, UTair Aviation.

    • February 12, 2012: Eurocopter unveils its new EC130 T2. Seven launch customers order 105 helicopters.

    • March 5, 2012: The team behind the X3 hybrid demonstrator aircraft receives innovation award from the American Helicopter Society International.

    • April 27, 2012: The 500th EC145 helicopter is delivered to Mexican operator Transportes Aereos Pegaso.

    • May 23, 2012: Eurocopter delivers first set of A350 XWB passenger doors.

    • June 20, 2012: Airbus Helicopters begins X3’s month-long U.S. tour. The final leg occurs in Washington, DC.

    • October 3, 2012: American Eurocopter delivers first EC130 T2 to Maverick Aviation Group.

    • November 9, 2012: Airbus Helicopters’ X3 technology demonstrator takes the spotlight at ILA Berlin and participates in daily flight demos.

    2011

    X3 Airbus Helicopters


    • February 1, 2011: New Eurocopter service and support center in Aberdeen is inaugurated.

    • February 15, 2011: Death of Jean Boulet.

    • March 6, 2011: Commercial launch of the EC145 T2 and the new “e” versions at Heli-Expo.

    • April 19, 2011: Delivery of 1,000th Dauphin to Pawan Hans.

    • May 9, 2011: Systemhaus project breaks ground.

    • May 12, 2011: The X3 reaches speed of 232 kt (430 km/h).

    • June 16, 2011: Eurocopter Global Logistics is inaugurated.

    • June 27, 2011: KAI-EC Helicopter company is created.

    • June 30, 2011: Eurocopter acquires Vector Aerospace.

    • July 12, 2011: Delivery of the 100th EC225 to Bristow Group.

    • July 20, 2011: Delivery of the 1,000th EC135 to the ADAC.

    • October 25, 2011: New plant in Mexico breaks ground.

    • October 26 and 28, 2011: German variants (T1/T2+), Italian variant (T3), French variant (T6) and Belgian variant (T11) of NH90 TTH in final configuration (FOC) achieve declaration of conformity.

    • December 22, 2011: 1st NH90 TTH is delivered to France.

    2009


    • April 1, 2009: Eurocopter in Japan merges with the Group’s local distributor, increasing Eurocopter’s share in the company to 90%.

    • June 30, 2009: The Tiger HAD version, equipped with two MTR390 “enhanced” engines providing a takeoff rating with 14% more power, performs its first flight.

    • July 10, 2009: As part of the Korean Helicopter Program (KHP), the Dynamic Test Vehicle (DTV) performs its first flight in Marignane.

    • July 31, 2009: First prototype for the Korean Utility Helicopter (KUH) program is rolled out in South Korea.

    • September 18, 2009: “Step A” qualification is obtained for the naval version of the NH90 for the Netherlands.

    • November 17, 2009: “Step A” qualification is obtained for the naval version of the NH90 for France.

    • December 4, 2009: The EC175 performs its first flight.

    • December 17, 2009: December 17, 2009 The EC175 performs its official maiden flight in Marignane in the presence of many guests: customers, partners, suppliers, journalists and Eurocopter employees.

    2008

    Airbus Helicopters Indonesia


    • February 24-26, 2008: Eurocopter unveils the EC175 at Heli-Expo 2008: 111 purchase options are signed.

    • March 11, 2008: The first NH90 is delivered to the Finnish Air Force.

    • June 24, 2008: The EC155 drone demo (UAV) performs its first official unmanned flight.

    • June 30, 2008: The Polish Health Ministry signs a contract for 23 EC135s and an EC135 simulator.

    • November 19, 2008: Eurocopter announces the creation of Eurocopter Indonesia.

    • December 23, 2008: A Eurocopter/Helibras consortium and the Brazilian government sign a contract for 50 EC725s.

    2007


    • February 15, 2007: The new AS355 NP version of the Ecureuil/A-Star is certified.

    • March 28, 2007:The new Eurocopter España site in Albacete is inaugurated.

    • June 20, 2007: The first “high cabin” version of the NH90 is delivered to the FMV (Swedish Defence Materiel Administration).

    • June 20, 2007: Eurocopter celebrates its 15th anniversary with almost 800 customers at the Château de Chantilly.

    • August 27, 2007: The first UH-72A “made in America” is delivered to the U.S. Army.

    • September 2007: The fleet of 96 AS365/HH-65 Dauphins operated by the U.S. Coast Guard crosses the million flight hour mark.

    • September 25, 2007: The “helicopter by Hermès” is presented to the public at the NBAA trade show in Atlanta.

    • November 1, 2007: Eurocopter creates Eurocopter UK, its subsidiary in the United Kingdom.

    2006

    Airbus Helicopters Vostok map


    • March 31, 2006: NATO Helicopter Management Agency qualifies the TTH German Army variant of the NH90 for the German Army.

    • April 6, 2006: Eurocopter inaugurates its subsidiary in Russia, Eurocopter Vostok.

    • June 5, 2006: The Korean Helicopter Program with Korea officially launches.

    • June 30, 2006: The US Army selects 322 UH-72A helicopters (a version of the EC145) for the Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) program.

    • December 11, 2006: The first UH-72A is delivered to the US Army.

    • December 13, 2006: Delivery of the first three NH90s to the German Army.

    2005


    • March 18, 2005: The first HAP Tiger is delivered to the French Army.

    • March 18, 2005: The first “high cabin” version of the NH90 conducts its maiden flight.

    • April 6, 2005: The first UHT Tiger is delivered to the German Army.

    • May 14, 2005: World record for highest altitude takeoff is set by a series AS350 B3 Ecureuils/A-Stars.

    • September 8, 2005:An aircraft equipped with a rotor control system with servo-flaps conducts its maiden flight.

    • December 5, 2005: The presidents of AVIC Il, Harbin Aircraft Industry Group and Eurocopter sign the EC175 cooperation agreement.

    2004


    • March 29, 2004: The aeronautical programs division of the French General Delegation for Armaments (DGA) issues the military type certification for the HAP version of the Tiger. On 30 March, the European Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR) then qualifies this version.

    2003


    • December 12, 2003: The NH90 with full fly-by-wire controls conducts its maiden flight.

    • December 15, 2003: EADS CASA acquires a stake in Eurocopter’s capital.


    2002

    Airbus Helicopters España map


    • September 22, 2002: Eurocopter and EADS CASA sign a memorandum of understanding to create Eurocopter España.

    • Eurocopter Malaysia, a wholly owned subsidiary of Eurocopter, based in Subang, is created.

    2001

    Airbus Helicopters site


    • June 21, 2001: Eurocopter Romania is created, a subsidiary owned by Eurocopter (51%) and Industria Aeronautica Româna(49%); based in Brasov.

    • July 12, 2001: Eurocopter Chile, a wholly owned subsidiary of Eurocopter, based in Santiago is created.

    • COHC Gamec is created, a subsidiary owned by Citic Offshore Helicopter Company (51%), Eurocopter (21%), Samwell Aviation (15%) and Bristow (13%); based in Shenzhen, China.

    2000


    • July 10, 2000: The EADS Group is formed.

    • November 27, 2000: The EC725 conducts its maiden flight.

    1999


    • June 11, 1999: The Aerospatiale Matra group is founded.

    • June 12, 1999: The EC145, successor to the BK117, conducts its maiden flight. The EC145 offers an increased maximum takeoff weight and payload capacity as well as modern cockpit identical to that of the EC135.

    • June 24, 1999: The EC130 conducts its maiden flight. This new member of the Ecureuil/AStar family offers more cabin space, a very wide visibility and a reduced noise level meeting the Grand Canyon standards required by the American National Parks services.

    1998


    • July 22, 1998: Aerospatiale announces its privatisation by way of a merger with the Lagardère subsidiary Matra Hautes Technologies.

    • November 17, 1998: DaimlerChrysler makes its stock market debut. Its subsidiary Dasa, a Eurocopter shareholder, is renamed DaimlerChrysler Aerospace AG.

    1997

    AS350 B3 Ecureuil/AStar


    • March 4, 1997: The AS350 B3 Ecureuil/AStar, successor to the Lama, conducts its maiden flight. Its powerful engine predestines it for aerial work. Eight years later, it breaks the world record for the highest takeoff altitude from the summit of Mount Everest.

    • June 17, 1997: The EC155 conducts its maiden flight. This upgraded version of the Dauphin (Spheriflex 5-blades main rotor and quiet Fenestron® tail rotor) provides 40% more cabin space.

    • July 2, 1997:The NH90 achieves its first fly-by-wire flight, and is the world’s first helicopter to be equipped with a fly-by-wire control system.

    • Eurocopter Philippines Inc. is formed. Based in Manila, the company is jointly owned by Eurocopter (70%) and PADC (30%).

    1996

    NH90 first flight


    • February 15, 1996: The NH90 performs its first official flight in Marignane before representatives of the customer nations and invited journalists and VIPs.

    • October 30, 1996:The AS365 N3 conducts its maiden flight, the high-performance version of the Dauphin family.

    1995

    EC120 Maiden flight


    • June 9, 1995: The EC120 conducts its first maiden flight. With this helicopter, Eurocopter extends its range to include 1.5 metric ton machines.

    1994

    EC135 Maiden flight


    • February 15, 1994: Maiden flight of the EC135, the first helicopter in the Eurocopter range and successor to the BO108. The most important addition to the EC135 is its Fenestron® tail rotor. It is also equipped with a bearingless main rotor.

    1992

    American Eurocopter site


    • January 1, 1992: The helicopter divisions of Aerospatiale (France) and MBB (Germany) merge to form the Eurocopter group.

    • September 1, 1992: The NH90 development contract is signed.

    • October 20, 1992: The joint development contract for the EC120 is signed with Catic (China) and Singapore Aerospace Ltd (Singapore).

    • American Eurocopter is founded: As a result of a merger between the Aerospatiale Helicopter Corporation and the MBB Helicopter Corporation.

    • Aerospatiale Helicopter Australia becomes Eurocopter International Pacific, later to become Australian Aerospace in 2002.

    • Eurocopter Service Japan is founded and later renamed Eurocopter Japan in 2005.

    Early History