Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. company, announced that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued an Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) for the Bell 407GXi. The certification is a requirement for the Navy Advanced Helicopter Training System competition, enabling the Bell 407GXi to replace the Bell TH-57 Sea Ranger as the U.S. Navy's training helicopter.
Bell's replacement bid offers a combination of capability, ease of transition, and low sustainment costs for the Navy. Should the Bell 407GXi be selected for the U.S. Navy Advanced Helicopter Trainer program, the company plans to conduct final assembly of the aircraft in Ozark, Alabama.
A Bell-to-Bell transition offers low-risk to the Navy by streamlining instructor pilot and maintainer transition training as well as using common support equipment and infrastructure. The 407 airframe has proven capabilities as the platform for the MQ-8C Fire Scout for the U.S. Navy.
The Bell 407GXi's new IFR capability will allow for all-weather operations while continuing to provide multi-mission capability safely, reliably and effectively.