- Engine Upgrade: The original engine of the MD 520N is replaced with a more powerful engine used in the MD 530N model. This engine upgrade significantly improves the helicopter’s performance and capabilities.
- Maximum Gross Takeoff Weight (MGTOW) Increase: The MGTOW of the helicopter may be increased, allowing it to carry a higher payload or additional fuel, which enhances its operational flexibility.
- Avionics and Systems Upgrade: Some avionics and systems may also be updated to match the features found in the MD 530N model.
- Performance Improvements: The upgraded configuration typically results in improved performance metrics, such as higher cruise speeds, better climb rates, and increased maximum range.
Summary of MD 500E to MD 530F Conversion:
MD Helicopters, Inc. (MDHI) offers an exclusive E-to-F conversion program, where an MD 500E helicopter can be upgraded to an FAA-certified MD 530F model aircraft.
The conversion process follows a strict, FAA-approved procedure, taking approximately 8 to 12 weeks to complete. During the conversion, the MD 500E is disassembled, and various airframe modifications, component installations, inspections, testing, and certifications are performed, resulting in a fully-certified MD 530F model.
The conversion offers several key enhancements:
- Increased Gross Weight: The aircraft’s gross weight is increased to 3,350 lbs, providing greater capacity and operational flexibility.
- Improved Flight Characteristics: The converted MD 530F exhibits improved flight characteristics in confined areas, making it well-suited for various operational environments.
- Boosted Cruise Speed: The upgrade enhances the aircraft’s cruise speed, allowing for more efficient and faster transportation.
- Low Operating Costs: The E-to-F conversion delivers these performance improvements while maintaining relatively low direct operating costs (DOC).
The conversion program utilizes high-quality components and safety measures, ensuring essential safety margins while providing increased hot-and-high performance capability. The enhancements involve an engine upgrade from the Rolls Royce 250-C20B to the more powerful RR250-C30 engine, along with the replacement of main rotor and tail rotor blades, an upgraded F model main rotor gearbox, and an improved tail rotor drive shaft.