AgustaWestland, November 10, 2015 - The Joint Aviation Command (JAC) of the United Arab Emirates announced today it has selected the AW609 TiltRotor for search and rescue (SAR) missions.
Delivery of the first three AW609 TiltRotors to the JAC, with three additional options, is expected to start in the 2019 timeframe.
The Joint Aviation Command will be the launch customer for the search and rescue variant of the AW609 TiltRotor, which will include a tailored equipment configuration to meet its specific operational requirements.
The Joint Aviation Command said “The AW609’s unique speed and range characteristics, combined with its ability to hover, will dramatically increase SAR mission capabilities of the UAE’s Joint Aviation Command. We look forward to operating the AW609 TiltRotor and utilizing the speed advantage it brings.”
The Joint Aviation Command currently operates eleven AW139 helicopters for a range of missions, including SAR. The Joint Aviation Command will further expand its operational capabilities leveraging on the 275 knot maximum speed and 750 nm range of the AW609 TiltRotor. With approximately twice the speed and twice the range of a helicopter the AW609 can dramatically reduce the time it takes to reach a rescue scene.
The unique flight characteristics of the AW609 combine the benefits of a helicopter and a fixed-wing aircraft into one aircraft. Taking off and landing vertically, flying above adverse weather conditions with up to nine people in comfort in a pressurised cabin at twice the speed and range typical of helicopters, the AW609 represents the next generation of aircraft transport. The AW609 opens up new possibilities for a wide range of missions including VIP and corporate transport, search and rescue, emergency medical services, offshore transport and homeland security.