Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. announced today its receipt of an order for two of its latest-model helicopter, the H145//BK117 D-3 (“D-3”), from Aero Asahi Corporation. These are the second and third D-3s to be ordered by Aero Asahi, and they are intended for use in emergency medical services. Kawasaki has received 12 D-3 orders overall.
The D-3 is an improved version of the BK117 D-2 (“D-2”). It preserves the advantages and features of the D-2, which include a spacious cabin with an entirely flat floor, clamshell-type cargo doors at the rear that provide excellent application versatility, improved high-altitude hovering performance, greater noise reduction, and the latest avionics (electronic systems) to reduce demands on the pilot. It also features a new main rotor system (five-blade main rotor) that provides the following performance improvements.
- Increase of useful load weight by approximately 150 kg:
Maximum Takeoff Weight* was increased by approximately 100 kg, and the total empty weight was reduced by approximately 50kg, increasing the useful load of the D-3 by approximately 150 kg.
- Reduction of maintenance period by approximately 50%:
A contribution of fewer inspection items and intervals, the adoption of a modern, easy-to-maintain main rotor system.
The BK117 is a medium-sized, twin-engine helicopter jointly developed through international collaboration with the European helicopter manufacturer Airbus Helicopters and used for various purposes, including emergency medical services, firefighting, disaster relief, law enforcement, broadcasting, and personnel and cargo transport. Following delivery of the first model in 1983, the BK117 has been continually improved over the years, and thanks to the aircraft's outstanding technological strengths and high reliability, Kawasaki has successfully delivered 182 units as of December 31, 2021, and more than 1,600 worldwide with deliveries of Airbus Helicopters combined.
Moving forward, Kawasaki will continue making performance improvements to the BK117, and developing new equipment and components for various applications. Furthermore, Kawasaki will leverage the strong customer trust fostered through successful deliveries in the past, as well as the company's comprehensive customer support system encompassing everything from development to manufacturing, sales and after-sales services, in the pursuit of further business around the world.