Deliveries of the MI-8AMTSh-VA helicopters, a variant of the Mi-8 medium twin-turbine transport helicopter modified for use in the Arctic, may begin as early as next year.
A week ago the Russian news agency Ria Novosti reported that the first Russian Arctic Helicopter – built specifically for exploitation in adverse weather conditions in the far north – is to be tested out in just a few months time.
On Friday the Managing Director of the Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant (UUAP), Leonid Belykh, said that basically everything is ready:
- A prototype model is in the works, and it is all up to the Defense Ministry now. If we sign a deal this year, then we will start (the deliveries) next year.
According to the aviation plant the helicopter meets all the requirements in order to excel in the harsh weather conditions of the Far North.
The new helicopter is designed to operate in low temperatures and low visibility. The helicopter will also be able to fly even in the case of navigation problems, for example when it is without a satellite signal.
The new model is developed based on the upgraded Mi-8AMTSh-V helicopter, that features new Klimov VK-2500-03 turboshaft engines, a more powerful TA-14 auxiliary power plant and upgraded avionics.
The manufacturing company is Russian Helicopters (RH), headquartered in Moscow.
According to HR’s website, the enterprise produces around 35 percent of the global combat helicopter fleet and nearly 74 percent of ultra-heavy helicopters worldwide.