AW169 AAS (Armed Aerial Scout) is a twin-engined armed helicopter developed by AgustaWestland. It is a military variant of the AW169 commercial helicopter.
The AW169 AAS supports missions such as armed reconnaissance, escort, command and control, security operations, target acquisition and targeting, as well as fire support coordination.
It can carry machine guns, missiles and rocket launchers to accomplish a range of combat missions.
The AW169 AAS was launched by AgustaWestland during the Army Aviation Association of America Annual Convention in April 2013.
Armed Aerial Scout programme details
AgustaWestland developed the AW169 AAS as a contender for the US Army’s Armed Aerial Scout (AAS) programme.
The AAS programme is intended to replace the army’s ageing OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopters with a new helicopter, incorporating modern technology to meet the current and future requirements of the army.
AW169 AAS design features
AW169 AAS is designed to meet the Armed Aerial Scout programme requirements. The design and technology used for the AW169 AAS is leveraged from its base model AW169.
The AW169 AAS features a reduced number of components accounting for its low maintenance cost and time. Its airframe has been toughened to resist threats. The cockpit is made of night vision compatible glass and designed for a clear view of the surroundings.
The latest design of the engine and blades lower the heat and noise signatures of the aircraft. Redundant systems are provided for the critical equipments aboard the helicopter.
AW169 AAS cockpit and avionics
The cockpit of AW139 AAS can accommodate two pilots with two redundant control systems available for both the pilots.
The advanced glass cockpit is compatible with night vision goggles (NVG) to support good external visibility. Three multipurpose displays with touch screen technology are provided in the cockpit.
The avionics of the aircraft include an integrated 4-axis digital Automatic Flight Control System (AFCS), advanced communications and information management system, and synthetic vision and Helmet Mounted Display (HMD) or Head-up Display (HUD).
Sensors, systems and armaments on the helicopter
AW169 AAS is equipped with a FLIR (Forward Looking Infrared) camera to enable the pilot to steer the aircraft during nights and in foggy conditions.
The sensor suite fitted in the helicopter provides real time awareness for the crew.
Other systems fitted to the helicopter include HUMS (Health and Usage Monitoring system), HFDM (Helicopter Flight Data Monitoring) and traffic and collision avoidance system.
The aircraft can be armed with various types of weapon systems to support a wide range of operations. It can carry guns, rocket launchers and air-to- ground missiles.
Survivability of AgustaWestland’s military helicopter
The airframe of AW169 AAS is toughened to resist ballistic threats. The helicopter employs crash resistant seats and features armoured protection for crew, fuel systems and important parts.
The aircraft also employs a self-curing fuel system which repairs itself in case of crashes. The AW169 AAS is fitted with a retractable, heavy duty landing gear to enable landings on any terrain.
AW169 AAS engine and performance
The AW169 AAS is equipped with two Pratt & Whitney PW210 turbo shaft engines. The 1,000shp class engine includes just five major rotating components for supporting easy maintenance. Each engine delivers a maximum power output of 1,050shp at 6,000rpm to 6,409rpm.
The engine can be controlled by Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) system. The engine features a two-stage compressor, reverse flow combustor, single-stage high pressure turbine, two-stage shrouded power turbine and Combined Reduction and Accessory gearbox.
The AW169 AAS can fly at a cruise speed greater than 259km/h. It has a maximum range of about 550km and an endurance of three hours.
The Global Military Rotorcraft Market 2011-2021
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