The Eurocopter AS355 TwinStar twin-engined
counterpart to the AStar. Although there are two engines,
that doesn't necessarily translate to more power. It
simply means you have a backup should one fail. But the
TwinSTar is still a capable platform for ball mount shooting.
The engine redundancy is an important consideration when
filming is to take place over water, heavily populated
areas or mountainous regions. In some parts of the world
you cannot even fly over populated regions unless you
have a twin-engine helicopter. Although differing configurations
may be encountered, the cabin of the TwinStar is identical
to the AStar's thereby providing the same flexibility
with door mounts. Eurocopter also markets the TwinStar
as the Ecureuil or Squirrel in other worldwide markets.
Military versions are known as the Fennec.
general reference only.
The following specifications are for
the EUROCOPTER AS355 TWINSTAR.
They do not consider the altered weight-and-balance
characteristics or resulting restrictions
on inflight performance with installed
camera mounting systems.
ft (1.1 m) H
3.6 ft (1.09 m) W
Maximum takeoff weight:
Maximum takeoff weight
(w/ external load):
Never Exceed Speed-VNE1:
Hover ceiling - HIGE2:
Vertical rate of climb:
Maximum Takeoff Power:
Never to Exceed 2 HIGE-Hover In Ground Effect 3 HOGE-Hover Outside Ground Effect 4 SHP-Shaft Horsepower
Although an extremely smooth and stable
platform for gyro-stabilized ball mount shooting,
hover shots with door mounts require careful
finesse from a camera ship pilot with experience
or "time in type" with this aircraft.
It is possible in certain situations to have
aircraft yaw translated to the lens axis
of the mount leading to unwanted tilt motions
that are magnified with increased focal length.
Although the AS355 F2 is showcased here,
there is an uprated version, the AS355 N.
If usage seems likely, verify certification
for mount installation with the mount's vendor
and the aerial coordinator.
Most external mounts, particularly belly
mounts, require an aircraft equipped with
standard or high skid gear (illustrated above)
to avoid clearance problems with the filming
system's mounting bracketry. Verify this
configuration with the FBO providing the
aircraft in the event they are normally unaccustomed
to aerial filming.