Green light by EASA to AW169 helicopter
Finmeccanica AgustaWestland AW169 achieves EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) certification less than five years after the programme launch. The AW169 4.6 tonne helicopter is the first all new aircraft in its weight category to enter the market in more than 30 years, setting new certification and safety standards and marking the operational readiness of the whole AW Family. Delivery of the first production helicopters to customers will now commence.
This achievement has been made possible also due to the strong collaboration between the EASA and AgustaWestland teams. With the AW169, AgustaWestland has responded to market demand for a new generation versatile light-intermediate twin-engine helicopter and has achieved its aim of greatly reducing the time to market, whilst meeting the most stringent operational and safety requirements set by the certification authorities and by the market.
The first units will be delivered from the Vergiate final assembly line in Italy. A second AW169 final assembly line is being established at AgustaWestland’s Philadelphia plant in the USA. AgustaWestland’s Yeovil plant in UK plays a key role in the production of rotor blades and the tail rotor transmission system.
More than 150 AW169 helicopters have been ordered by customers around the world to date, including framework contracts and options, for a wide range of applications including executive/corporate transport, air ambulance, law enforcement, offshore transport and utility roles. Designed with inherent dual-use capabilities, the AW169 is also ideally suited for the wide scope of parapublic and government applications and will be able to meet military and naval requirements.
The helicopter will enter into service by end of the year.