Feature story International reporters receive UH-145 program briefing and flight demonstration

December 7, 2005 - The UH-145 rotary-wing aircraft’s operational advantages for the U.S. Army Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) mission were outlined to international journalists during a day-long briefing in Grand Prairie, Texas.

Reporters attending the event received an update on the UH-145, and were given opportunities to fly in one of two demonstrator aircraft that will be used for Army evaluations of the Light Utility Helicopter.

EADS North America is prime contractor for the UH-145 bid, and its EADS North America Defense business unit handles overall program management of the UH-145 system.

The U.S. Army plans to acquire more than 300 civil-certified helicopters for its LUH mission, which ranges from medical evacuation and passenger/logistics transportation to Homeland Security operations in the U.S.

Tom Harrison, the UH-145 Program Manager and EADS North America Vice President, underscored the UH-145's best-value solution for the Army with its operational capability, reliability and affordability. The UH-145 is based on the highly successful Eurocopter EC145 twin-engine helicopter, which already is in sustained production for use by a growing number of civilian and paramilitary customers in the U.S. and around the world.

"The UH-145's many advantages include its exceptional cargo volume and large rear clamshell doors, which are significant benefits for a utility helicopter," Harrison said. "The helicopter's large, unobstructed main cabin offers cargo flexibility that Army users can optimize for all LUH missions - including medical airlift, re-supply, and command & control."

The Army's decision to purchase an off-the-shelf, civil-certified helicopter led EADS North America to form a strong LUH industry team that ensures top-level production, support and training throughout the program's lifetime. Other members of the UH-145 industry team include American Eurocopter for helicopter production; Sikorsky Aircraft, which will provide its expertise in contractor logistics support; WestWind Technologies, a specialist in fast-reaction helicopter systems integration and engineering support; and CAE, a leader in simulation and training.

"From an industry perspective, the UH-145 brings together a unique combination of world-class players whose core competencies truly complement each other," Harrison added. "We have the winning team and the winning helicopter for the LUH mission."

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