Posted by John McHale
ABERDEEN, Scotland, 4 Feb. 2011. Eurocopter officially inaugurated its new North Sea Service Centre in Aberdeen, Scotland with new EC225 helicopter full-flight simulator. The new facility is in close proximity to helicopter operators who support the region's oil and gas industry -- as well as the emerging wind farm sector.
The North Sea Service Centre's new, full-motion EC225 simulator answers operators' needs for recurring training, enhanced safety training and forward looking infrared (FLIR) sensor training for crews in transport missions, support service, and search & rescue (SAR) missions.
It guarantees the most representative synthetic environment and the latest aircraft configuration, with through-life upgrades based on Eurocopter data packages and flight loop software using aircraft manufacturer software.
The helicopter simulator features a full-motion system with six degrees of freedom, an instructor station, simulation of all systems, and optional equipment solutions, avionics system, and full replica of the EC225 cockpit, sound and vibration, system and a visual system field of view of 210 degree horizontal and 80 degree vertical, which exceeds the highest Full Flight Simulator Level B requirements. A 50 degree vertical field of view located below the horizon gives a real look down capability for SAR and night helideck landing training. The visual database features the exact replica of airports, helipads, oil platforms and ships as experienced in the North Sea and is compatible with FLIR and night vision goggles (NVG) operations.
Eurocopter officials signed a long-term training agreement CHC Helicopter for at least 800 hours of annual EC225 simulator utilization. The simulator training at Eurocopter's Aberdeen center will host pilots from CHC's operations worldwide.
Sufficient space is available to add another simulator at a later date, potentially for Eurocopter's new EC175 helicopter.
"Our customers have been telling us they need easier access to training, notably to simulators," says Lutz Bertling, Eurocopter chief executive officer. "This strategy is in line with Eurocopter's reinforced commitment to improving flight safety by providing simulated alternatives to real flight. We are fully dedicated to enlarging our service offer and ensuring our simulators are in the right place at the right price for Eurocopter customers, with coverage in all our key markets around the world."
Currently, 100 Eurocopter helicopters are operated in the North Sea, generating more than 100,000 flight hours a year. A total of 45 are based at Aberdeen, another 11 are located at other Englsih bases, along with 31 across Norway. There are a further eight in the Netherlands, and five in Denmark. The Super Puma/EC225 helicopter family is the rotary-wing aircraft of choice by operators for the airlift of crews and equipment to ships and oil rigs, as well as performing offshore search and rescue missions in demanding environments.
The Aberdeen Service Centre is managed by Eurocopter’s fully-owned subsidiary, Eurocopter UK Ltd.
Posted by John McHale