AgustaWestland2007-05-14 16:28:45

AgustaWestland Future Lynx - The Next Generation Naval Helicopter

AgustaWestland is featuring its next generation intermediate maritime helicopter, Future Lynx, at IMDEX for the first time. This follows the signing of a contract by the UK Ministry of Defence in June 2006 to buy 70 of the new aircraft including 30 for the Royal Navy for its Surface Combatant Maritime Rotorcraft Capability.

The first flight of the first Future Lynx will take place in late 2009 with initial deliveries to the UK Ministry of Defence starting in 2011. The aircraft will then enter full operational service in 2014 with the British Army and 2015 with the Royal Navy.

Future Lynx features a new air vehicle that builds on the dynamic and vehicle systems of the existing Super Lynx 300 design, the latest variant of the best selling Lynx family of naval helicopters. It also incorporates an all new avionics and mission system that will deliver an enhanced and more capable air vehicle. The British Army and Royal Navy Future Lynx will have a common fully marinised airframe with provisions for a range of mission and role equipment to enable it to perform land, littoral and maritime roles.

The aircraft has been designed from the outset with a mass growth provision to allow incremental cost-effective capability upgrades from the In Service Date Maximum All Up Mass (MAUM) of 5790 kg through to an Out of Service Date MAUM of 6250 kg. The 12,000-hour fatigue life airframe also incorporates monolithic machined aluminium structural parts to reduce component count and maintenance and has improved crashworthiness features designed to meet military 90th percentile potentially survivable crash case conditions.

A new low set symmetric tail plane has been incorporated to improve flying qualities and larger cockpit doors have been designed to improve crew egress. The enlarged nose and rear fuselage give greater space and easier access to avionic units when compared to the existing Super Lynx, while an all new up-rated common undercarriage with strengthened attachments has been designed to meet the aircraft's MAUM of 6,250 kg.

Future Lynx will be powered by two LHTEC CTS800 engines each rated at 1015 kW (1361 shp) which give the aircraft excellent hot and high performance and single engine performance. Future Lynx also has an endurance of approximately 3 hours with standard fuel and 4.5 hours with auxiliary fuel.

Future Lynx will also feature a range of standard and optional equipment to enhance its survivability including crashworthy/armoured crew seating, crashworthy passenger seating, ‘role fit' armoured cabin floor, Wire Strike Protection System, Integrated Defensive Aids Suite and an engine Infra-Red Suppression (IRS) system. An Integrated Health and Usage Monitoring System (HUMS) is also to be fitted to improve safety and reduce cost of ownership.

Future Lynx will have a comprehensive and highly capable integrated avionics suite that enables and supports all missions. The basic aircraft avionics suite, consisting of navigation and communication systems, is controlled and managed by twin Control Display and Navigation Units (CDNU). Display of primary flight information is via four Smiths Industries 10� x 8� Liquid Crystal Displays (LCD) Integrated Display Units (IDU). This suite is designed to achieve high levels of availability, flexibility, redundancy and safety. It provides excellent navigation and communication facilities to enable maximum performance from the associated mission sensor suite.

Mission systems are managed by a Tactical Processor (TP) jointly developed by General Dynamics (UK) and AgustaWestland. Display and management of tactical views and control of the sensor suite is via the Integrated Display Units and a Cursor Control Device. Human Machine Interface (HMI) issues have been, and will continue to be, designed to minimise crew workload through extensive simulation and trials.

Prior to commencement of a mission, the AgustaWestland Mission Planning System (MPS) can receive and process relevant mission information, including Mission Orders, Tactical Airspace Information, Meteorological and Geographical Data. This enables missions to be planned for multiple platforms. These plans can then be rehearsed in either 2D or 3D and replanned to suit.

Accurate position Information is obtained from the navigation suite, which is based around an Integrated Global Positioning System (GPS) Inertial system, providing highly accurate and reliable data to support pilotage and mission sensor performance.

Sensors can include a nose mounted stabilised Electro-Optic Device (EOD) and a 360° scan surveillance radar. The Royal navy Future Lynx will be fitted with the Selex Sensors and Airborne Systems Seaspray 7000E multimode surveillance radar, which incorporates electronic scanning technology. The L-3 Communications Wescam MX-15Di has also been selected for the Royal Navy Future Lynx to provide a passive identification capability.

Future Lynx will be offered with a range of weapons to provide both an offensive and self protection capability including air-to-surface missiles, torpedoes, depth charges and a pintle mounted General Purpose Machine Gun or M3M Heavy Machine Guns (HMG).

Future Lynx will be fitted with a communications suite based upon the Thales Avionics Secure Communications Control System. Plain and secure voice communication is provided via the V/UHF SATURN and HF radios. The aircraft will also be available with an ESM and data link capability.

The new technology onboard will also mean support and maintenance costs over the life of the aircraft will be significantly reduced and customers will be offered an integrated operational support package and training programme similar to that currently being developed with the UK MoD to further reduce through life costs.

The Future Lynx will eventually replace the Super Lynx 300 in the AgustaWestland naval helicopter product range, however, the Super Lynx 300 will continue to be available to new and existing customers until at least 2010.

For more information contact:
Lysander Rd
BA20 2YB
United Kingdom
Tel:     +44 1935 475222 (switchboard)
Fax:     +44 1935 702131


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