On the second day of the Paris Air Show, Airbus Helicopters announced the launch of the design phase of a new heavy transport helicopter; the X6. For the time being, its design will not be finalised for another two years - although its lines resemble those of the H160 unveiled three months ago. This new twin-engined helicopter is destined for personnel transport missions and search and rescue operations by 2020. The X6 will have a Fly-by-Wire flight control system. Other news concerning the Airbus Helicopters’ H160, is that it undertook its first test flight on 13 June in Marignane, southern France. Equipped with the new Turbomeca (Arrano) engine, the H160 can carry 12 passengers and reach 300 km/h (190 mph). Entry into service is scheduled for 2018.
Let’s take a look now at publicity, with the launching of Safran’s new communication campaign at the Paris Air Show. An innovative campaign which goes hand in hand with its accent on innovation. The image shows a ‘plane waiting at a subway platform, giving us a taste of what the future might have in store for us. Accompanied by the slogan "We bring the future to your doorstep", Safran’s intention here is to evoke the importance of innovation issues on which the group is working. The campaign will be seen in the printed press and online, national and international, as well as on publicity billboards.
Another news item of the group comes from their subsidiary, Morpho Detection. The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has ordered 40 explosive detection systems (CTX 9800), at an estimated value of over 40 million dollars. The system controls checked-in baggage will be deployed in eleven US airports next year.
After two days of the show, we can also speak of a good crop of orders for the two major aircraft manufacturers. Thanks to the Dutch lessor, AerCap, and their firm order for one hundred 737MAX’s, Boeing returns to the lead. The US aircraft manufacturer has picked up contracts for nearly $ 17 billion, and Airbus almost $ 14 billion. Once again it is mainly the new generation 737 and A320 that are taking the aircraft manufacturers to new highs. Bombardier’s CSeries, has a long way to go before overshadowing them. Despite its daily flight demonstrations, it has recorded no new orders at the show. Swiss, the company that ordered thirty CS100’s in 2009, has just decided to convert a third of this order into CS300’s. Lufthansa’s subsidiary, the launch customer for the CSeries, will take possession of their first ten aircraft next year.
Finally, we could not resist showing you once again the breathtaking take-offs of the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350 during their flight demonstrations. Literally taking-off vertically. If you missed them the first time around, hold onto your seats.