25-Nov-2013 Source: Helibras
[electronic translation] Helibras held, on Thursday (21) at its factory in Itajubá (MG), the first flight of a unit of EC725 completely produced in the company in Brazil. The flight took place two months before the deadline for the schedule of activities of the EC725 project.
The BRA 17 inaugurates the third stage of the program of nationalization in the country also getting pre-equipping items, electrical and mechanical installation of the crew and mission packages
Seven more that are already on the production line in Itajubá also go through this process. Before, EC725 already receiving country in the wiring, electronic systems, transmissions, rotor and all the basic configuration.
Aimed at Navy, the first flight of this unit occurred in the presence of the Fleet Admiral Luiz Fernando Palmer Fonseca, Chief of Naval Operations, Vice Admiral Sergio Roberto Fernandes dos Santos, Commander in Chief of the Fleet, Rear Admiral Carlos Alberto Matias, Commander of Force Naval and members of GAC Helibrás. The prediction is that the helicopter is ready for delivery in the second half of 2014.
The program for the purchase of EC725 for the Armed Forces is the result of a contract signed between the consortium Helibrás / Eurocopter and the Ministry of Defense to acquire 50 new helicopters of this model for the Navy, Army and FAB with the condition of the transfer of technology and knowledge required for the manufacture of aircraft in Brazil and until the last unit at the end of the contract, in 2017, these helicopters have incorporated 50% domestic content.
£ 420 million was invested in the construction of a new hangar that housed the assembly line of the EC725, and physical adaptations in the company, as a new test bank, paint booth and articles related to expansion. The amount also included the training of employees in Brazilian Eurocopter in France and coming of foreign technicians in Brazil to accompany the implementation of the new line in the country. So far, eight EC725 helicopters were delivered.