The AgustaWestland AW609, formerly the Bell/Agusta, is a twin-engined tiltrotor VTOL aircraft with a configuration similar to the Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey.
Agusta AW-609 TiltRotor
Alenia G.222 STOL / Alenia C-27 SPartan / Aermacchi MB.326 Impala / Aermacchi MB.339 PAN / Aermacchi MB.345 HET / Aermacchi MB.346 Master /
Agusta AW-609 STOL / Fiat G91 PAN / Fiat G91 Y Yankee / Aermacchi MB.326 Impala / Aermacchi MB.326 Impala / Aermacchi MB.326 Impala
Design and development
The AgustaWestland AW609, formerly the Bell/Agusta BA609, is a twin-engined tiltrotor VTOL aircraft with a configuration similar to the Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey. It is capable of landing vertically like a helicopter while having a range and speed in excess of conventional rotorcraft. The AW609 is aimed at the civil aviation market, in particular VIP customers and offshore oil and gas operators. The AW609 is a tiltrotor aircraft capable of performing vertical landings whereas conventional fixed-wing aircraft cannot, allowing the type to serve locations such as heliports or very small airports, while possessing twice the speed and the range of any available helicopter. AgustaWestland promotes the type as "...combining the benefits of a helicopter and a fixed-wing aircraft into one aircraft". The AW609 appears to be outwardly similar to the military-orientated V-22 Osprey; however, the two aircraft share few components. Unlike the V-22, the AW609 has a pressurised cabin. As of 2013, multiple cabin configurations have been projected, including a standard nine-passenger layout, a six-to-seven-passenger VIP/executive cabin, and a search and rescue model featuring a hoist/basket and four single seats; medevac and patrol/surveillance-orientated variants has also been proposed. For increased passenger comfort, the cabin is both pressurised and equipped with soundproofing. Access to the cabin is via a 35-inch-wide (89 cm), two-piece clamshell door center-set into the fuselage underneath the wings.
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Agusta AW-609 Tilt Rotor
The 16 G.222s delivered to Afghanistan were scrapped in the summer of 2014 by the Defense Logistics Agency. After the U.S. spent $486 million to buy 20 C-27As, 16 were sold as scrap to an Afghan construction company for about $32,000; the planes were reportedly scrapped "to minimize impact on drawdown of U.S. forces in Afghanistan." The four remaining aircraft are stored at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, with the U.S. seeking other interested buyers..
Agusta AW-609: See below
Role VTOL corporate transport
National origin United States / Italy
Manufacturer Bell/Agusta Aerospace
First flight 6 March 2003
Introduction expected 2019
Status Under development / flight testing
Capacity: 6 to 9 passengers or 5,500 lb (2,500 kg) payload
Length: 13.4 m (44 ft 0 in)
Wingspan: 10 m (32 ft 10 in) (distance between prop-rotor centres)
Width: 18.3 m (60 ft 0 in) rotors turning
Height: 4.6 m (15 ft 1 in) to top of fin
Empty weight: 4,765 kg (10,505 lb)
Maximum speed: 509 km/h; 316 mph (275 kn)
Cruise speed: 509 km/h (316 mph; 275 kn) maximum
Range: 1,389 km (863 mi; 750 nmi) normal fuel + 2,500 kg (5,500 lb) payload at 463 km/h (288 mph; 250 kn)
Ferry range: 1,852 km (1,151 mi; 1,000 nmi)
Endurance: 3 hours with normal fuel
Service ceiling: 7,620 m (25,000 ft)
Hover Ceiling out of Ground Effect (HOGE): 1,525 m (5,003 ft)
You are definitely intrigued to discover Agusta AW-609.
Bell/Agusta aimed the aircraft "at the government and military markets". Another key market for the AW609 has been the expansion of offshore oil and gas extraction operations, which requires aircraft capable of the traversing the increasing distances involved. In 2001, Bell estimated a market for 1,000 aircraft.Bell/Agusta stated in 2007 that they intend for the BA609 to compete with corporate business jets and helicopters, and that the BA609 would be of interest to any operator that has a mixed fleet of fixed wing and rotary wing aircraft. In 2004, Lt. Gen. Michael Hough, USMC deputy commandant for aviation, requested that Bell conduct studies into arming the BA609, potentially to act as an escort for V-22s.
Agusta/Bell AW-609 Tiltrotor
At the Farnborough Air Show in July 2012, AgustaWestland announced that it was to offer a higher-weight variant of the AW609 (up to 17,500 pounds or 7,900 kilograms; this model would trade some of its vertical takeoff performance for increased payload capacity. Officials from AgustaWestland have suggested that this short take off and vertical landing (STOVL) variant may be an attractive option for search and rescue and maritime operators.