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Tactical Helicopter – Chinook

The Chinook’s RAF role is explained by Ken Delve.

The role

OF ALL THE ROLES examined in this series, that of the tactical helicopter has the most recent operational introduction, having a history of less than 40 years. Like a number of the other roles, this arose as a secondary consideration to the original concept for the operational employment of the helicopter. Helicopter development was slow and uncertain in the mid 1940s but by the late 1940s the Americans had taken the lead in this sphere.

Despite these early trials, there was a distinct lack of enthusiasm for the potential

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RNZAF Light Helicopter Tender

LONG-STANDING plans to replace the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) Bell 47G Sioux fleet moved ahead on October 13 with issue of a Request for Tender (RFT) for a new Training/Light Utility Helicopter (T/LUH) for the RNZAF. It was decided some time ago that the replacement helicopter would not train only rotary-wing pilots, but also be used in the light utility role. An invitation to register interest was issued in July 2005 (see RNZAF Training/Light Utility Helicopter Project Advancing, September 2005, p27).

The new RFT stipulates that the helicopter offered must be currently in production, have twin engines with

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Planned Thai Helicopter Deals

US CONGRESS was notified on July 21 by the US Defense Security Co-operation Agency of a possible Foreign Military Sale of two UH-601. Black Hawk helicopters to the Royal Thai Navy (RTN). If all options are exercised, the total value of the contract will be $46 million.

The deal would also include spare and repair parts, support equipment, personnel training and training equipment, contractor engineering and technical support services. The RTN will use the helicopters to provide utility lift requirements and help to reduce the variety of different airframe platforms in its inventory. Thailand already has S-70A Black Hawks in

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Parow

Dieter Flohr reports on the demise following unification of former East Germany’s main naval helicopter base at Parow.

LONG-ESTABLISHED LINKS with the world of aviation look set to come to a close at Parow, a village just north-west of Stralsund on the Baltic coast. In 1938 Reichsluftmarschall Hermann Goering built an airfield on the shallow beaches of Strelasund to accommodate the flying boats. When the flying boats became obsolete, the barracks were retained for training purposes. But, in accordance with the Potsdam Treaty at the end of World War Two, all parts of the airbase that could be used by

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Nemo in Afganistan

Task Force ‘Fenice’ the helicopter component of the Esercito Italiano (Italian Army) in Afghanistan — received a boost to its capabilities last year from a new operational unit, Squadrone NH90 (NH90 Company). It brought into theatre the army’s newest helicopter, the NH90.

Deployment Decision

The decision to deploy the NH90 dated back to spring 2011, when it was necessary to deploy an effective replacement for the Italian Navy’s AW101 helicopters. ThevAW101s were reaching the end of their deployment and various substitutes were able to fulfil the same missions, namely combat support, combat service support (CSS) and medical evacuation.

The options

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Massive Cost Cutting To Hit UK Helicopter Force

AS A result of the massive overspend on the Astute submarine and Nimrod MRA.4 programmes, and with the costs of the war in Iraq, the Treasury has reportedly demanded major savings in the Defence Budget. This is placing the Ministry of Defence’s Equipment Plan (EP) in serious difficulties. In response, MoD teams, colloquially known as ‘work strands’, put forward a series of cost-cutting measures, which were intended to reduce the deficit.

AFM understands that work strand 13, led by Air Commodore Kevin Leeson, was tasked with reducing helicopter support costs and with taking CI billion out of the future rotorcraft

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RNZAF Training/Light Utility Helicopter Project Advancing

PLANS TO replace the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s Bell 47 Sioux training helicopters are moving ahead with publication of an Invitation to Register (ITR) interest for the NZ Defence Force Helicopter Capability Project. Interested parties had to register by July 25, with the ITR seeking companies that can provide an in-production helicopter meeting the requirements in the ITR. Four to eight helicopters will be required, the exact number to be determined later.

Unlike the Sioux that it will replace, the new helicopter is required to fulfil a much more advanced rotary-wing aircrew training role, enabling crews to easily move

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Kariba Rescue

Michael Hamence lifts the veil on covert SAAF operations during the Rhodesian Bush War.

‘VFR ONLY’ CERTIFICATION of the Aerospatiale SE 319B Alouette III helicopter rather restricted its operational use during the Rhodesian Bush War. The Rhodesian Air Force (RhAF) and South African Air Force (SAAF) crews who flew the Aylos (as it is affectionately known) were perfectly capable of handling any situation that might confront them — but within the manufacturer’s certified limitations. It goes without saying, that those limitations were frequently stretched — and on one occasion, SAAF crewmembers found themselves in a unique situation.

By 1975, the

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HELICOPTER HYBRID EUROCOPTERS X3

The US Army’s need for high-speed vertical lift beyond 2030 has prompted helicopter manufacturers tre-explore the options for high-speed rotary-wing flight. In the coming decades, the US Army want to replace its Apaches and Black Hawks with aircraft that have the abilities of a helicopter but the superior overall performance of a turboprop. The X3, designed to prove new propulsion technology, actually made its first flight days before its public unveiling and remains a long way from a final product. The company says it is pursuing an agenda of delivering performance at a lower cost than the alternatives including AgustaWestland

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FUTURE HELICOPTERS

The Esercito has for some time been involved in the NH-90 programme (ETT, Helicopter da Trasporto Tattico, according to its Esercito designation), and intends to acquire a considerable number of these new European helicopters (there is an order for 60 machines). There is also a requirement for a new ESC helicopter which, together with the NH-90, will replace the old AB.205, AB.2I2 and AB.412.

The most likely replacement candidate for the ESC role is the Agusta-Bell AB.139, the successor to the successful Huey series, which will be offered to the market as an avant-garde helicopter with excellent characteristics and performance.

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