A new upgrade kit is available for the Rolls-Royce M250, which supplies power for the Bell 407 and MD600. The value improvement program (VIP) will lower fuel burn by 2 percent and raise hot/high performance by up to 5 percent, without increasing the weight of the engine, according to the company. Rolls-Royce received FAA certification for the upgrade—which incorporates modifications to the engine impeller and diffuser, using technology from the RR300 and RR500 programs—in late 2011 and will offer the kit to operators by the end of first quarter 2012.
Honeywell and Rolls-Royce joint venture Light Helicopter Turbine Engine Company (LHTEC) is also reporting that the CTS800 engine recently topped 100,000 hours in service. That figure covers a fleet of more than 500 CTS800s that serve a number of helicopters, including the Sikorsky X2 and AgustaWestland T129, with the engine also set to power the AgustaWestland AW159 when it enters service in the late 2012/early 2013 timeframe.