Aerospace and defence company Airbus has secured European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) certification for its five-bladed H145 helicopters.

The certification includes the full range of capabilities consisting of single-pilot and instrument flight rules (IFR) and single-engine operations (Cat.A/VTOL) and night vision goggle capability.

Following this approval, Airbus will be able to deliver the aircraft towards the end of mid-2020.

Airbus Helicopters CEO Bruno Even said: “Our new five-bladed H145 is an excellent example of our quest for continuous improvement and providing incremental innovation that responds to our customers’ requirements.

“This helicopter combines value-added features with the robustness and the reliability of a tried-and-tested bestseller, making it very competitive in the light twin-engine market.”

With the certification, the company plans to begin customer deliveries in the upcoming months.

The two Safran Arriel 2E engines power the aircraft that has a useful load of 150kg.

It also features a new bearingless main rotor design, which will ease maintenance operations while improving aircraft serviceability and reliability.

Additionally, the H145 is equipped with full authority digital engine control (FADEC) and the Helionix digital avionics suite. It features a high-performance four-axis autopilot.

The US Federal Aviation Administration certification is expected to follow later this year.

The new H145 conducted several test campaigns, including in Spain at medium altitudes, a cold-weather test in Finland, and a high-altitude test campaign in South America.

In October last year, Airbus Helicopters and the EASA signed a memorandum of cooperation (MoC) to develop the next-generation of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) platforms and associated regulatory frameworks.

In a separate development, Airbus reportedly extended furloughing programmes for 5,300 of its employees in Spain and the UK.

In an emailed statement, an Airbus spokesman told Reuters: “This will be effective from 20 May till 30 September and affects all Airbus Operations SL employees in Spain (with some exceptions), which means around 3,100 employees.

“Airbus Helicopters and Airbus DS employees in Spain are not impacted.”

Approximately 2,200 Airbus workers in the UK will start furlough on 20 July and end on 9 August.