The AW101 medium-lift helicopter by AgustaWestland: Utilized in both military and civilian sectors

The AgustaWestland AW101 is a medium-lift helicopter used in both military and civil applications. First flown in 1987, it was developed by a joint venture between Westland Helicopters in the United Kingdom and Agusta in Italy in response to national requirements for a modern naval utility helicopter. Several operators, including the armed forces of Britain, Denmark, Norway and Portugal, use the name Merlin for their AW101 aircraft. It is manufactured at factories in Yeovil, England and Vergiate, Italy; licensed assembly work has also taken place in Japan and the United States.

AgustaWestland's AW101 medium-lift helicopter is used in both military and civilian applications

Prior to 2007, the aircraft had been marketed under the designation EH101. The original designation was in fact EHI 01, from the name given to the Anglo-Italian joint venture – European Helicopter Industries – but a transcription error changed this to EH101 and the designation stuck. In 2000, Westland Helicopters and Agusta merged to form AgustaWestland, leading to the type’s current designation.

Norwegian Air Force (Luftforsvaret) service:

AgustaWestland's AW101 medium-lift helicopter is used in both military and civilian applications

On 25 October 2007, a project started that had the intent to replace all Westland Sea King search and rescue helicopters with new rescue helicopters by 2020. On 19 December 2013, a contract was signed between AgustaWestland and the government, for the purchase of 16 AW101 helicopters. The agreement came about after fierce competition between different manufacturers to satisfy the Norwegian requirements. Participants were AgustaWestland, Eurocopter, NHIndustries, Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation and Boeing. The government considered that AgustaWestland AW101 met the requirements and specifications in the best possible way.

AgustaWestland's AW101 medium-lift helicopter is used in both military and civilian applications

On 12 June 2017, Per-Willy Amundsen, Minister of Justice and Public Security, announced the opening of Leonard’s AW101 Norway Training Centre at Stavanger Sola Airport. The training centre includes an AW101 Full Flight Simulator (FFS), jointly developed by Leonardo and CAE to Level D, which is a CAE Series 3000 device, along with an AW101 SAR console training system linked to the FFS to provide rear crew training. The first training course at the centre started prior to delivery of the first rotorcraft. The training center will be used by both Norwegian and foreign AW101 customers.

AgustaWestland's AW101 medium-lift helicopter is used in both military and civilian applications

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