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Survitec Group is now offering an upgraded aviation liferaft for the H225 Super Puma helicopter that is fully compliant with EU-OPS (JAR OPS 3). The new liferaft can be installed without any modifications to the aircraft.

Called the RFD Heliraft F18R, the product is based on the tried and tested RFD Heliraft 18R Mk3, which has been redesigned to meet a new specification from Airbus, the helicopter manufacturer. The F18R combines improved performance with a number of important design changes.

Switching to a new nitrogen inflation system means the F18R inflates faster and it can operate in temperatures ranging from -40°C to 70°C, extending the operational area of the Super Puma. This has also allowed the size and weight of the gas cylinder to be reduced. Swapping the hull material to a FAA/EASA approved yellow polyurethane coated nylon has also reduced the weight of the liferaft while increasing fire retardancy in compliance with the new specification. Altogether the engineering work has produced over 5kg in weight savings.

Other important modifications are the addition of lifting handles to each side of the valise and the fitting of a 20m mooring line instead of the existing 11m line. An EU-OPS (JAR OPS 3) compliant Emergency Pack has been included to replace the current FAR91 E-Pack. The new design also features a pouch and cord to secure an Emergency Locator Transmitter to the valise.

Said David Stelling, Survitec’s Aviation Sales Manager: “We can now offer the operators of H225 Super Puma helicopters a significantly upgraded liferaft option that is lighter, more robust and fully compliant with the requirements of EU-OPS. This will allow our customers to push their operational envelope, giving them the confident to face potential extreme environments with an advanced safety solution. Our new liferaft has already undergone extensive testing and we are pleased to announce it is available for purchase now. The upgrade procedure is quick and inexpensive without having to modify the aircraft in any way. It is a straightforward upgrade for all Airbus customers.”