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AgustaWestland exhibits AW189 SAR at FIA 2012

AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, is exhibiting the new generation AW189 8-tonne class helicopter in a search and rescue configuration for the first time ever at the Farnborough International Airshow. Launched in June 2011, the AW189 is designed to meet future demanding requirements for long range, long endurance SAR operations in all weather conditions and operating environments. Meeting the latest safety and certification requirements and equipped with advanced avionics and mission systems, the AW189 offers unmatched capabilities in its class and is being offered for the UK's SAR-H requirement. Certification of the AW189 is on schedule for 2013.

The AW189 SAR is the advanced UK solution to meet the UK's SAR-H requirement with second to none operational and industrial benefits for Britain. A British solution for a British requirement.

Should the AW189 be selected for the UK SAR-H requirement, all SAR-configured AW189s will be assembled at AgustaWestland's Yeovil factory, not just those for SAR-H, but all AW189s sold worldwide. This would create and sustain several hundred long term highly skilled jobs in the UK. Also as the AW189 moves into production many opportunities will be created within the UK supply chain for sub-systems, parts and equipment, potentially sustaining up to 1000 jobs over the 20 plus year production programme. There would also be UK aircraft support and training centres for SAR-H, keeping jobs and skills in the UK throughout the life of the aircraft.

AgustaWestland has been providing helicopters and supporting them to keep Britain's seas, shores and mountains safe since 1955. Following the Whirlwind, Wessex and Sea King the AW189 is the next generation helicopter with the capability to deliver the best lifesaving capability overland, offshore and around the coastline of the UK.

The AW189 has a large 11.2 cu m cabin with a further 2.4 cu m storage space available for equipment. Large sliding cabin doors make the loading of survivors easy both on the ground and when using the rescue hoist installation. Other equipment fitted to the AW189 includes life rafts, emergency floats, Health and Usage Monitoring System, Flight Data Monitoring, dual rescue hoist, ice protection system and a range of advanced avionics systems.

The AW189 uses cutting edge technology including the latest lightweight composite materials to provide greater speed, range and whilst meeting the latest safety standards. Its SAR capability has been developed from that of the AW139 currently in UK commercial SAR service. With green technology reducing its carbon footprint, fuel consumption and noise, the AW189 is the most efficient and environmentally responsible helicopter in its class.

AgustaWestland's Yeovil facility has already been playing an important role in the design and development of the AW189. Activities undertaken preliminary design of the overall architecture; design and development of dynamic components and vibration analysis. Manufacturing activities for the development aircraft have included critical components such as rotor blades, gearboxes and drive shafts.

Together with industrial activities already underway on the AW169 4.5 ton helicopter, the work is contributing to the transformation of the Yeovil facility into having a major role in the growing commercial helicopter market, enabling existing jobs to be sustained and new jobs to be created in the future.

Press release issued by Leonardo-Finmeccanica Helicopters on July 9, 2012


 Contact details from our directory:
Leonardo-Finmeccanica Helicopters Airframer


 Related aircraft programs:
AgustaWestland AW189

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