EC 635 Twin-Engine Light Combat Helicopter

The EC 635 is Eurocopter’s powerful lightweight twin-engine army helicopter designed for air-to-air combat and ground support. It is also used as a utility helicopter and for training, search and rescue and combat search and rescue. The helicopter is an armour-protected and armed version of the proven federal and civil EC 135 helicopter, of which more than 300 have been ordered.

The first EC 635 order of nine was delivered to the Royal Jordanian Air Force in July 2003. An order for nine EC 635 helicopters for the Portuguese Army was cancelled in August 2002.

In April 2006, Switzerland ordered 20 EC 635 helicopters for utility and advanced training missions. RUAG Aerospace is licence-building 16 of the helicopters.

Eurocopter delivered the first in March 2008, RUAG the third in August 2008. The deliveries were completed in December 2009.

Design of Eurocopter EC 635 helicopter

The helicopter incorporates Eurocopter’s low-noise patented Fenestron tail rotor. The array of ten blades in the Fenestron is arranged asymmetrically and is spaced at different intervals, which substantially reduces the helicopter noise.

The four-bladed, bearing less, main rotor system is made of fibre-reinforced composite and the bearing less main rotor and Fenestron tail rotor give a high level of manoeuvrability coupled with a very low noise signature.

Cockpit and weapon systems of the EC 635

“In April 2006, Switzerland ordered 20 EC 635 helicopters for utility and advanced training missions.”

The helicopter is equipped with a Thales Avionics and SFIM Meghas glass cockpit, an air data computer, an SFIM automatic flight control system and a global positioning system.

A colour weather radar can be fitted. Secure voice and data communications systems are installed according to the customer country’s requirements.

The helicopter can carry a full range of electronic warfare and weapon systems, including air-to-air missiles, rocket launchers, internally mounted guns and an external gun pod.

Options include chaff and flare launchers, missile launch detection systems and night vision compatible cockpit lighting.

Combat search and rescue

The helicopter can carry two stretcher patients and up to three crew members. Different medical installations are tailored to the mission needs.

Loading and unloading is carried out quickly and easily through the extra large sliding doors and the rear clamshell doors. In winching operations, the patient is safely lifted in helicopter hover mode.

An externally mounted load mirror and a backed up double hook system are installed to ensure safe and secure rescue missions for the survivors, patients and crew.

Utility version of the powerful lightweight twin-engine army helicopter

The standard version carries one or two pilots and six or seven equipped troops. The cabin is fitted with large sliding doors for fast embarkation and exit. Stores can be loaded through the rear clamshell doors.

For surveillance, the helicopter can be fitted with an under-fuselage surveillance pod with night and day channels, forward looking infrared, a multisensor turret and SX-16 searchlights.

Television and video systems can be installed in the cabin. Cabin doors and viewing windows suitable for surveillance operations can be fitted.

Performance and engines of Eurocopter’s EC 635

The EC 635 has a maximum speed of 259km/h and a range with standard fuel tanks of 620km.

“The helicopter is an armour-protected and armed version of the proven federal and civil EC 135 helicopter, of which more than 300 have been ordered.”

This can be increased to 880km with an additional tank. The helicopter can climb at 457m/min to a height of up to 3,050m. Maximum take-off weight is 2,835kg.

The helicopter manufacturer offer the EC 635 with a choice of two engine types, both equipped with full authority digital engine control (FADEC). The FADEC system provides enhanced performance, engine protection and power plant monitoring.

The engine for the EC 635 T1 is the Turbomeca Arrius 2B2, rated at 417kW of continuous power, while the EC 635 P1 is fitted with the Pratt & Whitney Canada PW206B2, rated at 419kW continuous power.

The standard fuel tanks have a capacity of 673l which gives a range of 620km. An additional long-range fuel tank can be fitted as an option, which extends the range to 880km.

The Global Military Rotorcraft Market 2011-2021

This project forms part of our recent analysis and forecasts of the global military rotorcraft market available from our business information platform Strategic Defence Intelligence. For more information click here or contact us: EMEA: +44 20 7936 6783; Americas: +1 415 439 4914; Asia Pacific: +61 2 9947 9709 or via email.

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