Bell 525 Relentless

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Bell 525 Relentless
Role Medium-lift utility helicopter
National origin United States
Manufacturer Bell Helicopter
First flight 1 July 2015
Status Under development

The Bell 525 Relentless is an American medium-lift helicopter, under development by Bell Helicopter. The Bell 525 was unveiled at the 2012 Heli-Expo in Dallas, Texas in February 2012. The helicopter first flew on July 1, 2015.

Design and development[edit]

The Bell 525 is being developed to meet a requirement for a medium lift helicopter. It will be constructed primarily from composites and metal and is to be the first commercial helicopter to incorporate fly-by-wire flight controls,[1] with tactile cues. The system is triple redundant, and is developed in two simulator environments.[2] The 525 will be powered by a pair of GE CT7-2F1 turboshaft engines, with a new composite five-blade main rotor system.[3] The cost of the 525 has not yet been determined, but it is expected to be cost competitive on missions between 50 and 400 nmi, performed by helicopters such as the AgustaWestland AW139 and Sikorsky S-92.[4][5]

The Bell 525 is designed to fit the emerging "Super-Medium" size category suited ideally to support offshore oil and gas operations,[6] with 50% of the customers coming from that sector.[2] Helicopters under development in the same class are the Airbus Helicopters H175 and the AgustaWestland AW189.[3] The Bell 525's maiden flight was planned for late 2014.[7] PHI, Inc. is the launch customer for the type.[3]

After a six-month delay, the Bell 525 took its first flight on July 1, 2015. Bell expects certification in 2017.[8][9] FAA suggested special rules in May 2016.[10] On July 6, 2016, a Bell 525 crashed during a test flight, killing both occupants.[11] The aircraft broke up in flight[12] while travelling about 229 mph at an altitude of about 2,000 feet. The crash delayed certification.[13]

Specifications (Bell 525)[edit]

Data from Bell Helicopter[14][15][16]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1 or 2
  • Capacity: 16 or 20 passengers
    8,200 pounds (3,700 kg) useful load
  • Gross weight: 20,000 lb (9,072 kg)
  • Fuel capacity: 2,400 liters (530 imp gal; 630 U.S. gal)
  • Powerplant: 2 × General Electric CT7-2F1 turboshaft, 1,800 shp (1,300 kW) each
  • Main rotor diameter: 54 ft 6 in (16.61 m)

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 190 mph; 306 km/h (165 kn)
  • Cruising speed: 178 mph; 287 km/h (155 kn)
  • Range: 575 mi; 926 km (500 nmi) with a 1,530 pounds (690 kg) payload
  • Service ceiling: 20,000 ft (6,096 m) . 12,000 ft (3,700 m) hover in ground effect, 6,000 ft (1,800 m) HOGE

Avionics

See also[edit]

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bell's 525 is Relentless". Sport Aviation: 14. April 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Maher, Guy. "'Flight Testing' the Bell 525 Relentless" Vertical, 10 July 2014. Accessed: 23 July 2014. Archived on 23 July 2014.
  3. ^ a b c Norris, Guy (February 20, 2012). "Bigger Bell (web title: Bell Rings In Changes With Super-Medium 525 Relentless)". Aviation Week & Space Technology. New York: McGraw-Hill. 174 (7): 36–37. 
  4. ^ "Bell 525 Brochure". Bell Helicopter, February 2012. pdf
  5. ^ "‘Relentless’ 525 To Be Largest Bell Helicopter". AINOnline, February 2012.
  6. ^ http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/analysis-oil-prices-create-super-uncertainty-409077/
  7. ^ "Bell Helicopter Reveals the Latest in the Bell 525 Program during HELI-EXPO 2014". Bell Helicopter, February 25, 2014.
  8. ^ Perry, Dominic (July 2, 2015). "VIDEO: Successful first flight for new Bell 525 Relentless". Flightglobal.com. Retrieved August 16, 2015. 
  9. ^ Osborne, Tony (July 1, 2015). "Bell Helicopter Completes First Flight Of Model 525". Aviation Week & Space Technology. McGraw-Hill. (registration required (help)). 
  10. ^ "Federal Register - Special Conditions: Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc. (BHTI), Model 525 Helicopters; Interaction of Systems and Structures". Retrieved 6 August 2016. 
  11. ^ Ramirez, Domingo (July 6, 2016). "Bell helicopter crashes in Ellis County, two reportedly killed". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Retrieved July 6, 2016. 
  12. ^ "DCA16FA199". NTSB. Retrieved 6 August 2016. 
  13. ^ "NTSB releases preliminary report on Bell Helicopter crash". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Retrieved 6 August 2016. 
  14. ^ Specifications
  15. ^ Technical specifications
  16. ^ https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/bell-confident-on-further-525-performance-boost-417011/

External links[edit]