Bell reveals 525 Relentless progress at Heli-Expo

Bell Helicopter reveals the latest on the Bell 525 Relentless programme at Heli-Expo 2014.
Full size mock-up of the Bell 525 Relentless at the 2012 Farnborough International Air Show (Photo: Terry Spruce, Corporate Jet Investor)

Full size mock-up of the Bell 525 Relentless at the 2012 Farnborough International Air Show (Photo: Terry Spruce).

Bell Helicopter shared updates of the Bell 525 Relentless helicopter programme at Heli-Expo 2014, alongside a full-size mock-up of the helicopter, which has been newly configured for search and rescue (SAR) missions.

“With the Bell 525 Relentless, we are delivering a generational shift in pilot situational awareness, maintainability and safety,” said John Garrison, president and CEO of Bell Helicopter. “This new generation is rapidly becoming a reality as we are hitting a number of milestones – including extensive testing in our systems integration lab, the production of thousands of parts and the construction of our 525 assembly facility in Amarillo. Right now, we are on course for the first flight of the Bell 525 late this year with two aircraft already in assembly.”

Garrison also spoke to the updated performance specifications based on program progress and testing. Testing is underway in Bell Helicopter’s fully integrated System Integration Lab (SIL), allowing for virtual flight testing of the Bell 525. The aircraft is capable of carrying more than 16 passengers for 250 nautical miles and more than eight passengers for 500 nautical miles.

“At Bell Helicopter, we believe in putting the customer at the centre of everything we do, and that includes involving the customers from the outset,” said Garrison. “Every step of the way, we have developed the 525 Relentless with direct involvement from a panel of customer advisers from around the world, committed to providing expertise in all facets and segments of the helicopter industry. This continued high level of integration with our customers from development through production gives us a high degree of confidence the Relentless will deliver industry-leading value across a range of missions and segments.”

The Bell 525 will be powered by GE engines, have a Garmin G5000H fully-integrated glass flight deck and Bell’s (Lift Assist Tail Boom Design) LATD technology for improved hover performance. It has a cruise speed of 155 knots and a range of 500 nautical miles.

The Bell 525 Relentless can be adapted to several configurations, including corporate/VIP, firefighting, energy, helicopter air ambulance and search and rescue.

Terry Spruce

Terry is Senior News Editor and writes for both Corporate Jet Investor and Helicopter Investor. He is also responsible for our helicopter guides. Terry has been an aviation enthusiast since the early 1970s. He is a lapsed Private Pilot and ex-Piper Cherokee owner. He has flown a number of light aircraft and is comfortable sitting in the co-pilot's seat or the back of any aircraft. Before moving to journalism he was a banker for 20 years. You can contact him at: terry@corporatejetinvestor.com or follow him on twitter @Terry_Spruce

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