Saudi Aramco operates in some of the world’s most remote areas, and the Aviation Department supports and enables the company to reach its strategic goals by operating in these remote areas. To meet the increasing complexity and sophistication of our operations, Aviation has initiated a fleet replacement strategy that oversees the replacement of its helicopters and airbuses with new generation models.
As part of the fleet replacement strategy, 16 medium-sized AugustaWestland (AW) 139s have been replaced with a new, second-generation model. The AW139 is an industry leader, helping ensure safety and reliability in challenging, multi-role operations.
Complementing and expanding capabilities
With its enhanced range, endurance, hover performance, and safety features, the AW139 will complement Saudi Aramco’s offshore capabilities. The AW139s also allows Aviation to expand its capability to provide a fully functional search and rescue program, enhancing Saudi Aramco’s capabilities to respond to safety and rescue emergencies like never before.
One of the many new safety enhancements is Night Vision Technology, which greatly improves flight safety, turning night into virtual day. Also, the helicopter has a large passenger cabin that can accommodate 15 passengers, and can be customized with specialized equipment for executive and VIP transportation.
AW139 parts are imported from Italy and the U.S., but they have been assembled in Saudi Arabia. Many of the new fleet have already entered service for the company.
Additionally, five AW109s have been replaced with the newest variant of the Airbus H145 that are the latest 4-ton-class twin-engine helicopters. With a larger cabin, compact airframe, and powerful engines, they have the capability and flexibility to perform better in their current operations, as well as augment Aviation’s abilities to take on new missions. The new addition will also allow Aviation to meet the predicted future growth of Saudi Aramco’s hydrocarbon strategy.
Ensuring and enhancing safety
At the core of the fleet replacement strategy is Saudi Aramco’s priority to ensure and enhance safety. Second, assembling the AW139 and H145 in the Kingdom ensures that Aviation mechanics and engineers remain leaders in the region for servicing all operational needs for Saudi Aramco.
Fahd H. Cynndy, manager of the Aviation Department, said: “Saudi Aramco Aviation has achieved massive strides in becoming the most optimal provider of air transport solutions for the company. As our ambitions have grown in tandem with our capacity to deliver on every challenge that we have faced, we have integrated response agility with the industry’s best-in-class efficiency.
“With that, we now stand tall in our community as we offer the industry an agile and innovative flight service that has become a model for the region to emulate,” he said.
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