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U.S. Army Announces OH- 58 "A2D" Bell Helicopter Conversion Program

Bell Helicopter announced that the U.S. Army initiated a contract for the OH-58 "A2D" cabin conversion upgrade pro- gram for the highly successful OH-58 platform. "We are pleased and proud that the United States Army has awarded us the first phase of the "A2D" agreement," said John L. Garrison, president and chief executive officer of Bell Helicopter. "We have enjoyed a long tradition of cooperation and innovation with the U.S. Army and and the "A2D" pro- gram is yet another example of this tradition."

The "A2D" conversion pro- gram is an Army initiative to replace war time losses suffered by the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior. This conversion program takes an existing "A" model OH-58 and upgrades them to "D" model.

"The OH-58D Kiowa

Warrior is a significant work horse for our combat opera- tions fleet," said COL Robert Grigsby, Army's Armed Scout Helicopter project manager. "This conversion will ensure the Kiowa Warrior continues to be a combat multiplier on the Joint and combined battlefield across the full spectrum of mili- tary operations." The agreement calls for an initial conversion of eight cab- ins with an option for a second group of ten. After the conver- sion of the 18 OH-58A aircraft, and establishment of a "hot" production line, Bell

Helicopter will be in a position to respond to the Army's poten-

tial requirement to replace wartime losses with "new metal" cabins reducing overall fleet age.

The OH-58D Kiowa Warrior has the highest OPTEMPO (approximately 90 hours per month per aircraft flight utiliza- tion rate), highest readiness rates (in excess of 85% Full Mission Capable) in the U.S. Army com- bat fleet of aircraft, and is the most requested close air support aircraft in theater today. The Kiowa Warrior has surpassed 630,000 total combat flight hours. Bell is also developing an OH-58 Block II fleet represen- tative demonstrator to facilitate prototyping activities to benefit U.S. Army future requirements. The Block II OH-58 provides an attractive, cost efficient alterna- tive to the U.S. Army and U.S. taxpayer. ◆

Aeronautical Accessories Expands EASA Approved Products As Worldwide Distribution Grows

Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., an affiliate company of Bell Helicopter, has expanded its list of new 2010 products that have achieved certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The EASA certification of these products is an important element of the rotorcraft parts manufacturer / distributor's strategic priorities. "Tying new product certifi- cation initiatives with global distribution expansion allows us to more strategically meet the needs of our customers," said


Greg Williams, president and general manager, Edwards & Associates, Aeronautical Accessories parent company. "In designing our products we listen to customers' require- ments and develop products that enhance the value of their mission." "We've had an extremely suc- cessful year in terms of develop- ing new products and there are more yet to come," said Williams. "We are committed to achieving appropriate certifica- tions for each region and con- tinue to focus on global distri- bution aimed at providing our customers local service in an international market." In the past months,

Aeronautical Accessories has received EASA-type certifica- tions for products such as: High Visibility Crew Doors and Kits, Bulged Skylight, Tail Boom Antenna Mount Kit,

Mounting Provisions for Tail Boom Radar Altimeter (for Bell 407) Replacement Low Skid Crosstubes (for Bell AB 412 and AB 412EP) Passenger Shoulder Harness Restraint System (for Bell 206A,B)

"Our success in obtaining these EASA certifications, com- bined with our strong alle- giances in the region, is proof of our commitment to further strengthening our position servicing the European market," said Williams. "These EASA certified product options are a welcome addition to our grow- ing list of 407, 412, 412EP and 206A and B customers in Europe."

Aeronautical Accessories dis- tributes products in Europe through a partnership with the Bell Helicopter Supply Center in The Netherlands. The com- pany also has distribution affili- ates in over 110 countries. ◆


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