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First pre-production H160 coming together
H160 assembly. © Airbus Helicopters / Eric Raz

First pre-production H160 coming together

Airbus Helicopters has announced that the first pre-production H160 has been fitted with its rear fuselage, comprising the tail boom and tail assembly.

Airbus Helicopters has announced that the first pre-production H160 has been fitted with its rear fuselage, comprising the tail boom and tail assembly.

Under the company's new site specialisation strategy, the rear fuselage was pre-assembled in Albacete, Spain. The main fuselage of the first pre-production aircraft arrived from the company’s facilities in Donauwörth, Germany earlier in the year. Final assembly takes place in Marginane.

The main fuselage/tail fuselage join-up takes place at station 3 on the seven-station flow line. The main dynamic assembly is also installed at this point, prior to installation of engines, cowlings and landing gear at station 4.

A total of ten pre-production aircraft are planned as the company fine-tunes its “plug and play” industrial process. As the process gains in maturity, Airbus aims to progressively reduce assembly lead-times to a target assembly time of 40 days at full production rate.

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