The H145, also known as the Eurocopter EC145, is a light utility helicopter manufactured by Airbus. The H145 is based on the Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm BK117 C1. The helicopter is also manufactured independently by Kawasaki Heavy Industries under the designation BK117 C2.
The EC145 is the result of collaboration between Eurocopter and Kawasaki Heavy Industries. The EC145 shares a significant number of components with the EC135, including its forward cockpit and updated avionics. In essence the craft is a combination of the BK117 C1 and the EC135 with some new components shared with neither of those aircraft. The current updated version of the EC145 was revealed in 2011 as the EC145 T2, the T2 has significant performance upgrades over the EC145. This includes new and more powerful engines, better engine management, a Fenestron tail rotor and 4-axis autopilot. Eurocopter plans to complete 50 EC145 T2s in 2015.
Like the H135/EC135 the H145/EC145 has considerable intervals between maintenance procedures and inspections, which makes it attractive to police and emergency services who need to budget carefully. Thanks to its modular design the H145 can easily incorporate mission-specific modules for areas such as law enforcement. Other options include FLIR, searchlights, hoists, cameras and more.
Roping capability in addition to the above also make it a good choice for special police unit deployment. A variety of EMS cabin configurations are available, likewise offshore oil and gas transport and business transport options are also possible.
Once again like the H135, the H145 is quiet compared to other helicopters in its class. Making it suitable for urban and suburban deployment. In fact, along with the H135/EC135 the H145 is one of the few helicopters permitted to fly in the Grand Canyon. Thanks to its superior acoustics.
The H145 is notable for being versatile and hardy. It can fly “hot and high” and has a wide cabin, flat floors, side doors and rear doors. Its twin Arriel 1E2 turboshaft engines provide it with ample power reserves and, depending on configuration, it can accomodate between eight and 10 passengers. Features that make it stand out as an all-round civil helicopter.
The H145 costs about $5.5 million and is currently in service with 100 customers in 34 countries.