Launched in 2003, the new-generation Ardiden covers a power range of 1,400 to 2,000 shp, and is intended for use in five-to-eight ton single and twin-engine helicopters. The engine is particularly well-suited to demanding mission profiles, delivering sustained performance in hot-and-high conditions.
The Ardiden range features a remarkably compact modular architecture. The gas generator includes two centrifugal stages attached to a reverse-flow combustion chamber, a single-stage gas generator turbine and a two-stage power turbine. This design ensures that the engine remains very cost-effective, particularly in terms of maintenance and cost of ownership.
All Ardidens are equipped with the latest-generation, dual-channel Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC). The Ardiden family is divided into two groups: the Ardiden 1, which offers 1,400 shp with growth potential to 1,700 shp, and the Ardiden 3 (in development), covering 1,700 to 2,000 shp.
Today, over 250 Ardiden 1 are in service throughout the world. Ardiden 3G variant has been certified in June 2017.
Ardiden engines are installed in the Druhv, LCH (Light Combat Helicopter) and LUH (Light Utility Helicopter), all built by India's Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, and in Russian Helicopters' Ka-62 and the AC352 from China's Avicopter.
Ardiden 3C / WZ16
The WZ16 is fitted in the Chinese AC352, jointly developed by Avicopter with Airbus Helicopters. Known in the west as the Ardiden 3C, the engine has been jointly developed by Safran Helicopter Engines, CAPI and Dongan, parts of the new Aero Engine Corporation of China (AECC) consortium, in a partnership for both development and production.
The WZ16 is a new-generation turboshaft in the 1,500 to 2,000 shp power class. It features a remarkably compact modular architecture, a best in class power to weight ratio with a low cost-of-ownership. Compared to the competition, it offers a 10 % lower fuel consumption.
The first flight of the Avicopter AC352 took place on 20 December 2016, in Harbin.
WZ16 will be the first helicopter engine to be certified in parallel, both in China by CAAC (Civil Aviation Administration of China) and in Europe under Ardiden 3C designation, by EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) under the Ardiden 3C designation. The EASA certification for the Ardiden 3C is expected by end of 2017, and the CAAC certification for the WZ16 in 2018.