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EC145 - Light Utility Helicopter (LUH)

The technologically-advanced and operationally-proven EC145 multi-mission helicopter has been used worldwide for law enforcement, emergency medical transportation, search and rescue, offshore and utility operations, and corporate transport. It was advertised as leveraging the then latest in modern and proven technology to deliver superior performance, outstanding operational reliability, excellent maintainability and safety.

The unobstructed main cabin is easily re-configurable to maximize mission flexibility, and the helicopter's sliding side and rear clamshell doors optimize access and effective space utilization. Seating capacity is for up to nine passengers, and two stretchers can be installed for medevac missions.

UH-145 - Light Utility Helicopter (LUH)

The US Army planned to acquire more than 300 LUH platforms to replace aging UH-1 and OH-58 aircraft through a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)-based acquisition strategy. The LUH would perform a wide range of light utility missions in the United States, including passenger and logistics transportation, medical evacuation and homeland security operations. The Army National Guard (ANG) was expected to receive the majority of these replacement aircraft.

EADS North America's UH-145 suggested their solution would be a US-built helicopter that offered a best value solution to meet or exceed all speed, range, endurance and performance requirements for the LUH mission. The UH-145 is a version of the highly successful EC145 helicopter, which has been in production since 2002 for law enforcement, paramilitary and security agencies, emergency medical service providers, offshore operators and corporations in America and around the world.

Incorporation of proven and new COTS technologies with the UH-145's operational capabilities result in an aircraft that was advertised as exceptionally easy and affordable to operate and maintain. Extensive use of lightweight manufacturing materials and extensive system modularity simplified maintenance, reducing lifetime ownership costs and logistics requirements.

On 3 October 2005, EADS North America expanded the industrial team for its UH-145 advanced helicopter with the addition of Sikorsky Aircraft, who would provide its expertise in contractor logistics support (CLS) for the US Army's LUH mission.

Also joining the UH-145 team were WestWind Technologies, specializing in fast-reaction helicopter systems integration, engineering support, and program management support, and CAE, specializing in simulation and training. Together, the new team members augmented the proven capabilities of EADS North America and its American Eurocopter business unit.

Overall program management for the UH-145 system was to be directed by EADS North America Defense, a business unit of Arlington, Virginia-based EADS North America.

Sikorsky occupies a prominent position in the medium-to-heavy military helicopter marketplace, and its products have been used by all branches of the US armed forces, as well as many foreign militaries. The company's role on the UH-145 team provides a complementary business activity for Sikorsky, which did not produce an aircraft in the LUH category that met with the requirements set forth in the Army's LUH request for proposals.

WestWind Technologies operates the US Army's Logistics Support Facility at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama, and specializes in quick-reaction, cost-effective mission equipment integration and airframe modification. Programs handled by the company include integration of the Common Missile Warning System on Army CH-47 Chinooks, UH-60 Black Hawks, and AH-64 Apaches, the design, mechanical and electrical integration, and installation of Martin-Baker crashworthy seats on US Air Force HH-60G Pave Hawk special operations helicopters, and desert modifications for the US Army's UH-60 Black Hawk, CH-47 Chinook, AH-64 Apache and OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopters.

Tampa, Florida-based CAE USA would supply the UH-145 cockpit procedures trainers, planned to become an integral element of pilot training and familiarization for Army crews operating the helicopter. CAE is a global leader in the design of sophisticated military and commercial training systems, having supplied the defense forces of more than 30 nations with simulation, training, and mission rehearsal solutions. The company has designed the widest range of helicopter simulators in the world, including A/MH-6, MH-60, and MH-47 combat mission simulators for the U.S. Army's 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment.

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