Jarosław Gowin, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Science and Higher Education, paid a visit on March 14th to PZL-Świdnik, a Finmeccanica company, to obtain first-hand knowledge about the technological potential and capabilities of the only producer of Polish helicopters and the main supplier to the Polish Armed Forces.
During the visit the company’s product range and capabilities, comprising complete helicopter manufacturing, from design, research and development, through to production, flight testing, plus training and customer support, were demonstrated. The main focus was on the research and development capabilities and the state-of-the-art aviation technologies introduced in Świdnik following multi-million investments by Finmeccanica and through public co-financing. Particular attention was paid to Research and Development (R&D) works on the AW009 helicopter (the newest version of civilian SW-4 model). This is a Polish design, introducing a new single-engine helicopter into the Finmeccanica portfolio of advanced helicopters that are marketed worldwide. It also provides the basis for design of SW-4 Solo, a major unmanned helicopter programme in Europe, and the only design of its type in Poland.
A lot of attention was devoted also to the impact of PZL-Świdnik on the development of Poland’s science and economy through new job creation and technology development as a result of cooperation with the R&D community. Moreover the role of PZL-Świdnik as the biggest exporter in the Polish defense sector today was highlighted. In 2015 exports exceeded 700 million PLN.
After the official presentation, Deputy Prime Minister Jarosław Gowin had the opportunity to obtain first-hand knowledge about the manufacturing and technological potential of the plant during a tour around the research laboratory of PZL-Świdnik. The laboratory is the biggest and most modern helicopter fatigue test facility in Poland. It was modernized and expanded using public co-financing. The last item on the visit agenda was the flight line of helicopters manufactured, modernized and overhauled in Świdnik.
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