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Kamov Company

Ukhtomsky Helicopter plant named after N.I.Kamov
8 the 8th March Str. 140007 Lubersy,
Moscow Region, Russia
Tel: +7 095 700 3204
Fax: +7 095 700 3031
Telex: 206112 KAMOV

Established in 1948, the Kamov company is one of the leaders in the development and manufacture of helicopters of various types. The organizational structure of Kamov Joint-stock company consists of a design bureau, experimental production facilities, flight test center and auxiliary services. Organisationally, Kamov consists of a design bureau, factory in Ukhtomsk, R&D testing centre. The helicopters of Ka-series are manufactured at Ukhtomsk factory, Strela (Orenburg), Kumertau Aviation Complex (KumAPO) and Progress Complex. Kamov employs 4200 people - More than 3000 helicopter specialists work at the company- and maintains a subsidiary in the Ukraine. The Russian Government keeps a 49% stock of the enterprise.

The company's helicopters are noted for their excellent flight and operational performance. Nikolai Kamov was a confirmed proponent of coaxial-rotor helicopters - the trademark of the Kamov company. He believed that the engineering and technological complexity of coaxial rotors would be made up for by the more compact and maneuverable design compared to a single-rotor configuration.

The prevailing technology used in helicopter design is the single-rotor scheme assisted by tail rotor. However, thorough investigations in the sphere of modern helicopter design prove the necessity to eliminate a tail rotor as tail rotor mountings are inherently disadvantageous due to the following: high probability of personnel injury at maintenance and in combat operations, power losses at torque transmission to tail rotor, and increased number of critical units and correspondingly increased maintenance. Fenestron-type and NOTAR structures (control by air stream blowing through tail boom) partially help to avoid the above-mentioned disadvantages.

The coaxial rotor scheme eliminates a tail rotor and correspondingly it negates all the disadvantages of single-rotor scheme. Besides, coaxial rotor helicopters are distinct for: increased thrust margin of main rotors vs. single-rotor helicopters, high rate of climb, absence of cross-couplings in helicopter control, small dimensions, and low vibrations. These features provide coaxial helicopters with unique maneuverability and easy controllability that are of paramount importance while piloting the helicopter in ground vicinity and restricted area conditions. The helicopter can land at and take off from unprepared surfaces as well as from surfaces covered with low bushes. Absence of tail rotor reduces maintenance costs. Control peculiarities of co-axial helicopters allow for quick mastering of helicopter piloting techniques by crewmembers as well as ensure safety training even to beginners.

Collision of coaxial helicopter rotors is no more probable than collision of single rotor blades with tail boom. Safe distance between rotors is determined on basis of special methods, calculations, researches and flight tests. At rotor starting and stopping in stormy conditions, rotor collision is prevented by centrifugal flap stops at lower rotor and droop stops at upper rotor. Safety of coaxial rotor scheme is proved by abundant operation experience of Kamov helicopters. KAMOV Company has been designing and manufacturing coaxial helicopter for more than 50 years and has practically polished to perfection the rotor system design.

Kamov Company originated from an experimental autogyro production plant. The Experimental Facility of Propeller Articles # 290, which was found in 1940 on the basis of airfield facility in the suburbs of Moscow at Ukhtomsky station. It was headed by N.I.Kamov. In 1941 the plant was evacuated and in 1943, during the Second World War, the plant was closed down. In 1948 a new design bureau headed by Kamov was created with the task of developing helicopters for the Navy. The Kamov Design Bureau was recreated in Moscow, and in 1954 it was again transferred to the previous territory (Ukhtomsky station).

Kamov specialization is development of helicopters of co-axial design that is two propeller helicopters with rotors on one axis and rotating in opposite direction. This helicopter design was always considered reasonable as it used rationally engine power, had good maneuvering properties and small dimensions. In the early 40th this design was widely used as an experimental helicopters design, however, as the theory of aeromechanics of co-axial did not exist the difficulties met at its creation and development made most designers refuse it.

Kamov development started with one-seat ship-based helicopter the Ka-10 (1949) for communication and surveillance. That actually gave rise to production of the co-axial helicopter design. Piloting features of the co-axial helicopter design deemed to be excellent for take-off and landing on the rocking decks of small size. The limited capabilities of this small one-seat helicopter prevented the Ka-10 to be put into series production. The one that was put into series production was the Ka-15, two-seat ship-based helicopter.

The main role of the Ka-25 ship-based helicopter was the destruction of nuclear submarines. Development of ocean fleet in the USSR required further development of ship-based helicopters, capable to carry out marine defense, reconnaissance, target detection, rescue operation and so on. The new ship-based helicopter was demonstrated in 1961.This helicopter became the milestone in the formation of the OKB and ship-borne aviation. High performances of the helicopter were demonstrated in 1974 while clearing of mines in the area of Suez Channel. In the early 1970s a multipurpose ship-based helicopter the Ka-27 was developed to replace the Ka-25. A total of 18 upgraded versions were built, the helicopters were exported to India, Syria, Bulgaria, Vietnam and Yugoslavia. Ka-25 has stayed on duty in the Navy over 30 year.

The Ka-25 anti-submarine warfare (ASW) design led to the development of the larger Ka-27 multi-purpose military helicopter and variants such as the Ka-27PS search and rescue version and Ka-28 ASW model. The Ka-29 combat/transport helicopter and Ka-31 surveillance variant are in operational service.

Historically Kamov mainly specialized in supplying helicopters for the Navy, while Mil - for the Army and civil aviation. In the 1980s the military portfolio of the company was enlarged to include the development programs of combat assault rotorcraft for the Land Forces and special-purpose helicopters for the law-enforcement departments. In the Ka-50 single-seat battlefield attack helicopter, Kamov produced a heavily-armed innovative design.

The second branch of Kamov's activity is creation of general purpose helicopter. The first helicopter for these purpose like (Ka-15M and Ka-18) were developed by the DB on the basis of ship-based Ka-15. They were widely used for chemical dispersion. However their low payload called for creation of a highly effective, specialized helicopter for agriculture. Taking into account that agricultural works are performed seasonally it ought to be reequipped to perform other works. This type of helicopter was the KA-26-multipurpose helicopter with two piston engines, three-blade co-axial propellers, two-thin empenage and four-strut non-retractable landing gear. Simplicity, easy operation and low power consumption provided the KA-26 wide use in the USSR and abroad. The Ka-25K is a transport helicopter with engines, three blade co-axial propeller and four-strut landing gear.

The Ka-32 series of multi-purpose civil helicopters include the T utility transport/crane and S maritime models. The company has also produced the Ka-37 experimental remotely-piloted helicopter. Kamov is currently developing the Ka-126, Ka-226 and Ka-115 multi-purpose helicopters, as well as the Ka-62 high-speed design, while the Ka-52 is being developed as a combat trainer and the Ka-137 is a multi-purpose, radio-controlled remotely-piloted helicopter project.

The company occupies a leading position in the application of polymer composites and highly automatic avionic installations for helicopters to ensure day/night operation in VFR ad IFR, in any region, over land or sea.

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Page last modified: 06-05-2016 19:53:11 ZULU