Ex­treme cold? It’s all grist to the new Mil

Pilot - - ROTORHEADS -

The Rus­sian De­fence Min­istry has taken de­liv­ery of the first Mil MI-8AMTSH-VA con­fig­ured for Arc­tic ser­vice. It was de­vel­oped specif­i­cally for op­er­a­tion in the coun­try’s north in tem­per­a­tures lower than -40°C, in dark­ness, where nav­i­ga­tion is dif­fi­cult, satel­lite and ra­dio re­cep­tion are un­re­li­able, and he­li­copters must fly over large ex­panses of wa­ter, and op­er­ate a long way from base.

To han­dle th­ese con­di­tions the MI-8AMTSH-VA is equipped with cabin, cargo, en­gine and gear­box heat­ing, im­proved in­su­la­tion, and Te­flon hoses for hy­draulic, oil and fuel sys­tems. For nav­i­ga­tion it has dual sat­coms, dig­i­tal avion­ics with built-in map gen­er­a­tion, and strap­down in­er­tial ref­er­ence sys­tems en­abling it to es­tab­lish co­or­di­nates in the event that satel­lite sig­nal is lost. Its weather radar scans in hor­i­zon­tal and ver­ti­cal pro­files. Night vi­sion equip­ment for the crew is also stan­dard, along with fa­cil­i­ties to pre­pare hot food and drink dur­ing ex­tended mis­sions away from base.

“This he­li­copter is cru­cial to the de­vel­op­ment of trans­port in­fra­struc­ture in Rus­sia’s north­ern re­gions, and also to com­pa­nies in the oil and gas sec­tor to sup­port off­shore work,” says Rus­sian He­li­copters Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Alexan­der Mikheev.

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