AgustaWestland upgrade the AW139
Company are introducing new features to helicopter
has announced a number of new capabilities that will be introduced in the near
future for the AW139 helicopter. These include enhanced navigation capabilities,
the latest collision avoidance system, additional icing clearances and new
helicopter deck clearances. AgustaWestland is working to certify a Satellite
Based Augmentation System (SBAS) capability and Automatic Dependent
Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) Out system to enhance the navigational and
surveillance capabilities of the AW139. The AW139 SBAS navigation system is
designed to be compatible with the WAAS, EGNOS and MSAS requirements. ADS-B
enhances flight safety by making the aircraft visible in real time to air
traffic control, and provides greater safety and operating efficiencies due to
the ability of air traffic controllers being able to guide aircraft with
smaller separation standards.
Development of Traffic Collision Avoidance System II (TCAS II) is now underway.
TCAS II not only monitors the airspace around an aircraft for other aircraft
equipped with a corresponding active transponder providing traffic advisories
but also provides aural and visual resolution advisories to the pilot.
AgustaWestland has also recently received UK Civil Aviation Authority approval
for the safety case report allowing the AW139 to operate from 16 metre x 16
metre helicopter decks at weights up to the aircrafts maximum gross weight of
company is working on the approvals for a Limited Ice Protection System (LIPS)
for the AW139 which will further expand market opportunities, in particular for
operations in the North Sea. The system will
include icing sensors, heated windshields and other icing protection measures.
The system does not require the heated rotor blades and associated equipment of
the Full Ice Protection System (FIPS) that is already in service on the AW139
for continuous operations in icing conditions.
Under a FAA STC
AgustaWestland is developing the capability for up to 500 kg of cargo and four
passengers or 1,000 kg of cargo to be carried in the passenger cabin.
Production of the AW139 is to be increased from the 83 aircraft produced in
2010 to 100 aircraft in 2012 in order to meet market demand and to provide
customers with reduced lead times. Production will be increased at both
AgustaWestland’s Vergiate and Philadelphia
facilities and later this year assembly will start in Russia under
the HeliVert joint venture with Russian Helicopters to supply aircraft to the
Russian and CIS markets. The AW139 is the benchmark helicopter and market
leader in the medium twin category with more than 530 sold so far and 400 in