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Safety > Technology


The technology leadership of Airbus Helicopters, Inc. and its Airbus Helicopters parent company directly contribute to our helicopter product line's high level of operational safety. Constant innovation ensures the latest advances in rotor and airframe design, system integration and avionics are incorporated in Airbus Helicopters rotary-wing aircraft.
Examples include:

Aircraft design

Fenestron shrouded tail rotor
Developed by Airbus Helicopters in the 1960s, the Fenestron shrouded tail rotor introduced a new level of helicopter safety on the ground and in the air. It is incorporated on the EC120, EC130, EC135, AS365 and EC155 helicopters. Advantages include good protection against ground obstacles and foreign object damage, increased safety for ground personnel working around the tail boom, high damage tolerance and the ability to continue in flight after a tail fan loss.

The Fenestron also contributes to aerodynamic efficiency with high thrust capability and high yaw maneuverability, the reduction of turbulence and vortex-shedding, less operating penalty in crosswinds, and the elimination of yaw control load for the pilot in cruise.

Starflex and Spheriflex main rotor hubs
Airbus Helicopters' Starflex and Spheriflex bearingless main rotor hubs ensure very fast response to pitch changes, while also offering excellent maneuverability and stability. Used across Airbus Helicopters' helicopter product line, they have a fail-safe design through the application of composite materials, and are practically maintenance-free.

Crashworthy seats Crashworthy seats on Airbus Helicopters rotorcraft are designed to stroke and/or plastically deform upon severe impact, absorbing all or a portion of the crash energy transmitted to the seat. They are equipped with a 4-point safety belt system, and the harness restraint system incorporates an automatic inertial reel and a device for manual locking of the shoulder belts.

Systems and displays

Vehicle and Engine Multifunction Display
The Vehicle and Engine Multifunction Display (VEMD) is an Airbus Helicopters development for the management and control of the primary aircraft and engine parameters. It reduces pilot workload and fosters a "heads-up" approach to flying, giving the pilot more time to focus on the external environment thanks to a quick and easy scan, excellent visibility and optimized ergonomics.

This fully-duplex system allows the display of three modes: Operating Mode, which is used mainly in flight to display engine and aircraft parameters, along with engine power checks and weight performance computation; Maintenance Mode, used on the ground to display the flight report page, over-limit page and avionics system failure page; and Configuration Mode, which allows the operator to configure the system to integrate optional equipment in the VEMD.

The VEMD is integrated in Airbus Helicopters' AS350, EC120, EC130, AS355, EC135, EC145, EC155 and EC225 helicopters.

Modular Aircraft Recording Monitoring System
The Modular Aircraft Recording Monitoring System (M'ARMS) is an integrated maintenance assistance system based on data recording and proactive monitoring. It is the HUMS (Health Usage Monitoring System) for the EC155 and EC225 helicopters, and also equips the EC135, EC145, AS365 N3. Complementary functions are its use for cockpit voice and flight data recording, and as the usage and quick-access recorder.

M'ARMS improves safety margins through reduced maintenance and operational errors, greater pilot awareness of flight limitations, and the effective early detection of mechanical failures.

Vision 1000 flight data monitoring system
Airbus Helicopters, Inc. partnered with Appareo Systems to develop and provide the Vision 1000 flight data monitoring system as standard equipment on all new-delivered A-Star family helicopters since 2010. The Vision 1000 device collects inertial and positioning data, ambient acoustic data and cockpit imagery, which are stored on a crash-hardened memory module, as well as a removable secure digital card. This information is processed internally for use in Flight Operations Quality Assurance (FOQA), flight trainingand accident investigation.