AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, has officially unveiled the latest generation AW169 AAS military helicopter during a dedicated ceremony held at the Army Aviation Association of America Annual Professional Forum and Exposition in Fort Worth, Texas (April 10th-13th) today.
The AW169 AAS is an advanced twin-engine helicopter with the capability to meet all US Army Armed Aerial Scout (AAS) mission requirements and provides a new-design, new-technology helicopter for the current and future battlefield. With two enhanced PW210A engines operating in challenging ‘hot & high’ conditions and advanced technology embedded into an efficiency main rotor system, the AW169 AAS delivers high performance and enduring capability at long range with engineered-in growth potential.
With a comprehensive set of available mission equipment the AW169 AAS is uniquely adaptable to support all US Army Aviation Armed Aerial Scout mission requirements cost effectively making it the prerequisite to defense readiness. The AW169 AAS features high performance, advanced safety features and outstanding cost/effectiveness. Combined with open systems architecture, integrated controls and displays, flight management systems, mission equipment and weapons – it is the only solution that meets the AAS requirements of today and tomorrow.
R. Scott Rettig, CEO AgustaWestland North America, said “We are very excited and proud to be unveiling the AW169 AAS helicopter today at Quad-A’s Annual Forum and Exposition. We believe it sets the new standard for Armed Reconnaissance helicopters.” Adrian Board, SVP Products, AgustaWestland added “The only new generation helicopter in its category in 40 years provides an insight of AgustaWestland design and development ability to offer the US Army levels of cost effectiveness and mission capability the service deserves to successfully and safely accomplish the mission for decades to come.”
The AW169 is uniquely suited to perform and safely accomplish the widest range of US Army’s present and future Armed Reconnaissance missions including aerial escort, command and control, security operations, deep operations, target acquisition and targeting, fire support coordination. The AW169 AAS offers high maneuverability, power margin and demonstrates a forgiving aircraft in all flight and mission conditions.
A damage and ballistic tolerant fail safe airframe and rotorcraft system features multiple redundancies of all critical systems, excellent one engine inoperative (O.E.I.) capability, a 30 minutes ‘run-dry’ capable transmission, self-sealing crashworthy fuel system, crashworthy airframe and seating, heavy duty landing gear and armor protection for crew, fuel system and vital components as well as an advanced integrated self-defence suite. Also, the AW169 AAS modern design for engines and blades reduces heat and noise signature further contributing to mission effectiveness and survivability.
A fully integrated aircraft and mission management system is based on latest generation technology and avionics comprising a low workload/high situational awareness single pilot IFR and NVG compatible glass cockpit with an integrated control and display system. This features three large multifunctional displays and touch screen technology. Excellent ergonomics in the cockpit allows an outstanding external visibility too. Avionics also includes an integrated 4-axis digital AFCS, advanced communications and data management system, a comprehensive sensors suite, synthetic vision and Helmet Mounted Display (HMD) / Head-up Display (HUD). A combination of weapon systems comprise machine guns, rocket launchers and air-to-ground missiles.
The AW169 AAS is designed to maximize operational effectiveness and reduce time and cost of maintenance, thanks to a reduced number of components compared to older or existing platforms, easy accessible and with an extended life cycle for many key components as well as advanced diagnostics devices. A comprehensive package of advanced dedicated training solutions and devices, including a Level D full flight simulator, will be immediately available when the AW169 enters the market.
With all 4 prototypes already exceeding a total of more than 200 flight hours in just nine months for development testing, the AW169 program is on time to enter the market in 2014.