Safran Helicopter Engines has delivered on schedule the first Arrius 2R engine made in the U.S.A. The handover to Bell Helicopter took place at Safran HE’s facility in Grand Prairie, Texas.
The Arrius 2R powers the new Bell 505 Jet Ranger X light single-engine rotorcraft. Until now, units had been assembled at the French firm’s headquarters located at Bordes, in the southwest of France.
The Arrius 2R was formally launched at the 2013 Paris Air Show alongside the Bell 505. The evaluation campaign started in April 2014 with its first ground run. The flight test programme started in November 2014 with the first flight of the Bell 505 at Bell Helicopter’s Mirabel facility. The Arrius 2R was certified in December 2015.
To date, more than 3,150 Arrius engines have been sold by Safran, to 430 customers in 60 countries.
Bell Helicopter officially opened the 82,300-square-foot, $26.3m Lafayette Assembly Centre for the 505 on 27th August. The company says it holds more than 350 letters of intent for the new model.