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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Bell Focuses on 429 Expansion in Europe

By Andrew Healey

Bell Helicopter is showcasing the 429 to European operators
during Helitech International 2013.
Photo courtesy of Bell
Explore Bell Helicopter’s 429 light twin, both on static display at Stand E10 and outside the exhibition hall, where a second airframe will be available for flight demonstrations throughout the show. Yet to make a deep impact in the UK, the 429 is pitched squarely at the para-public market and delivers “exceptional speed, range, hover performance and enhanced safety margins, with comfort and cost management unmatched by any other aircraft in its category.”


The 429 is certified for single- and dual- pilot IFR operations with GPS Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) capabilities that enable point-in-space approaches down to 250 feet. Bell’s BasiX-Pro integrated glass cockpit avionics feature either two or three multi-function displays, a dual digital three-axis autopilot and an integrated electronic data recorder.


Performance wise, the aircraft boasts a 150-knot (278 km/h) maximum speed, a range of more than 400 nm (741 km), and the ability to hover at more than 11,000 feet (3,438 m) outside ground effect.


The cabin has 204 cubic feet (5.78 cubic meters) of usable volume, features side doors 60 inches (152 cm) wide, optional rear clam-shell doors and can seat seven passengers and one crewmember on crashworthy seats. Other safety features include collective-mounted throttles, damage tolerant hub and rotor system, and “outstanding” one engine inoperative (OEI) performance, according to the company. Bell’s 429 is also the first helicopter certified through the MSG-3 Reliability Centered Maintenance (RCM) process resulting in reduced costs for operators.


Besides the 429, Bell is also sure to attract interest with new models such as the 525 Relentless and the aircraft that marks its return in force with the Short Light Single (SLS) to a sector it once dominated, and with updates to established machines, such as the 407GX.

For more information stop by Stand E10 or visit Bell online at www.bellhelicopter.com

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