Handover Of The First Aga Khan AB139
AgustaWestland delivered the the first of four AB139 helicopters for the Aga Khan Development Network ( AKDN). The helicopters will be operated in the remote and mountainous regions of South and Central Asia.
AgustaWestland, December 02, 2004 - AgustaWestland announce that, in a handover ceremony on 28 October at Agusta Vergiate plant, Italy, the first of four AB139 helicopters for the Aga Khan Development Network ( AKDN) was handed over. The AB139s will be operated in the remote and mountainous regions of South and Central Asia to ferry personnel and material for the construction of the three University of Central Asia (UCA) campuses.
The UCA, which is the first international university anywhere in the world dedicated to the problems and needs of mountain communities, will reach 40 million potential beneficiaries in Central Asia alone. Founded by the Presidents of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan, and the Aga Khan, the University aims to foster economic and social development throughout the vast and impoverished mountain zones of Central Asia. The AB139s will be based in Bishkek (Kyrgyz Republic), Dushanbe (Tajikistan) and Islamabad (Pakistan). "Our experience in the Northern Areas of Pakistan shows that the logistical efficiencies gained from the use of helicopters have had a positive impact on the beneficiaries - the poor in remote, high mountain areas - in terms of the speed, efficiency and quality of development activities," says His Highness the Aga Khan, AKDN's founder and Chairman.
The AB139 was selected for its reliability and performance in difficult conditions, including extreme temperatures and high altitudes. With the best vertical lift capability in the medium-twin class, energy-absorbing landing gear, and state-of-the-art avionics, safety and flight systems, the AB139 met or exceeded the specifications for a workhorse utility helicopter capable of operating in Central Asian conditions. Besides the recent AB139 recommendation by Integrated Coast Guard Systems (ICGS), a number of government agencies around the world are showing a keen interest in this new state-of-the-art medium twin engine helicopter that rings new levels of speed, comfort, reserve power and space for crew, passengers and survivors alike.
Agusta AB139 HB-ZGC ( Aga Khan Foundation )