2007-07-15 - VH-71VH-71 test helicopter flies in the UK
Neuer Präsidentenhubschrauber hebt ab<br /> The VH-71 helicopter made its maiden flight at AgustaWestland's facility in Yeovil, UK, on July 3, marking a significant milestone in the development of the United States' Presidential aircraft.
The new "Marine One" will be the world's most technologically advanced helicopter that will safely and reliably transport the president and vice president of the United States, heads of state and other official parties both at home and abroad with mobile "Oval Office in the sky" capabilities. The designated Test Vehicle #2 (TV-2), built under contract to the U.S. Navy, was assembled and prepared at an AgustaWestland facility. It is the first test aircraft built specifically for the VH-71 Presidential Helicopters Program.
During the 40-minute flight, AgustaWestland Chief Test Pilot Don Maclaine and Senior Test Pilot Dick Trueman performed general aircraft handling checks, tested flight characteristics at varying speeds up to 135 knots, and evaluated the on-board avionics systems. Initial Operational Capability of the Presidential helicopter is scheduled for late 2009.