AgustaWestland launches new R & D programme


Company launches research and development programme with £10 million UK Government grant

It has been announced that the UK Government has
awarded AgustaWestland, a total of £10 million in research and development
grants that will be delivered through the Technology Strategy Board. The
funding will go towards a new programme consisting of three R&D projects.

The programme will ensure that the UK maintains its leading position
for research, design and development in the fast growing civil helicopter
sector. The Next Generation Vertical Lift programme will encompass three
R&D projects focusing on main and tail rotor blades, transmission systems
and flight trials.

The novel and innovative technologies to be
researched, developed and delivered as part of the programme include soft beam
main rotor blades, innovative blade damper technology, fit and forget
gearboxes, real time rotor blade health monitoring and greener more sustainable
helicopter transmission systems. Luciano Marcocci, chief technical officer,
AgustaWestland said “This project will enable AgustaWestland retains its
position at the forefront of rotorcraft technology, helping to secure high
value manufacturing jobs in the UK.
As we enter challenging times it is vital that AgustaWestland retains its key
technological skills so that we can succeed in future markets.”

AgustaWestland will collaborate with SMEs including
Shearline Ltd and with the Universities of Bristol and Liverpool
who will lead on specific Research and Development (R&D) activities.