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Royal-air-force

GKN Aerospace to upgrade UK RAF Puma fuel tanks

GKN Aerospace to upgrade UK RAF Puma fuel tanks

GKN Aerospace has been contracted by Eurocopter UK to develop upgraded fuel tanks as part of the UK RAF’s life extension programme (LEP) for its fleet of Puma helicopters. The new self-sealing fuel tanks will enhance the helicopter’s survivability in today’s theatres of operation, providing extended protection for the crew against weapons such as heavy… Read more »

Source: GKN Aerospace, 27-Mar-13

RAF Chinook Pilot Honoured for Courage

RAF Chinook Pilot Honoured for Courage

He is among a total of 27 RAF personnel named in the latest Armed Forces Operational Awards and Joint Commanders Commendations for their service in Afghanistan, Britain and around the world. Flight Lieutenant Christopher Gordon used his helicopter to shield the troops as they boarded the aircraft, resulting in the loss of one of his… Read more »

Source: RAF, 26-Mar-13

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RAF appoints new Search And Rescue Force Commander

RAF appoints new Search And Rescue Force Commander

Group Captain Sara Mackmin has taken over as the RAF Search and Rescue Force Commander from Group Captain Frazer Nicholson The RAF SAR Force is now being commanded by the most senior female aviator within the UK’s Armed Forces. Group Captain Sara Mackmin’s recent appointment as the RAF SAR Force Commander marks the first time… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 15-Feb-13

Heli-One signs 13-year contract to service RAF Puma engines

Heli-One signs 13-year contract to service RAF Puma engines

On Feb. 7  Lars Landsnes from Heli-One, joined Ian Craddock, head of helicopters for the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD), to sign a multi-million pound, 13-year contract to provide long-term logistic support for the Makila 1A1 engines fitted in  new Puma HC2 helicopters used by the Royal Air Force (RAF). The RAF fleet of 24… Read more »

Source: Heli-One, 12-Feb-13

08-Feb-13 Boeing CH-47 Rowsley, UK

Shattered windscreen from bird strike.  Emergency field landing

08-Feb-13

Brighter hangars and lower bills at RAF Benson

Brighter hangars and lower bills at RAF Benson

Maintenance staff at a frontline RAF helicopter base are enjoying a better working environment, thanks to new lighting that not only brightens their working day but also saves energy and money. The Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) has worked with its regional industry partner PriDE to improve lighting in hangars at RAF Benson, in Oxfordshire, as… Read more »

Source: DIO, 05-Feb-13

UK military awards CAE two simulator contracts

UK military awards CAE two simulator contracts

The United Kingdom Ministry of Defence (MoD) has recently awarded CAE two contracts for simulator upgrades and training services at CAE’s Medium Support Helicopter Aircrew Training Facility (MSHATF). A contract to provide both ground school and simulator aircrew training services at MSHATF for the Royal Air Force (RAF) on the Puma HC2 helicopter has been… Read more »

Source: CAE, 05-Feb-13

RAF appoints helicopter pilot as Chief of the Air Staff

RAF appoints helicopter pilot as Chief of the Air Staff

Air Marshal Sir Andrew Pulford was commissioned into the Royal Air Force as a pilot in 1977 and, after flying training, joined No 72 Squadron, flying Wessex helicopters, beginning an association with the Support Helicopter Force which would last 25 years. During his flying career he accumulated over 5,000 hours on both Wessex and Chinook… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 25-Jan-13

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Upgraded British Chinook operational in Afghanistan

Upgraded British Chinook operational in Afghanistan

With an initial release to service granted in May 2012, RAF Chinooks crews were able to begin their operational work-up on the Mk 4 before declaring an initial operating capability in June 2012. This in turn allowed the first RAF crews to operate the Chinook Mk4 in support of UK security operations during the London… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 11-Jan-13

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Afghanistan heroism earns DFC for selfless Chinook pilot

Afghanistan heroism earns DFC for selfless Chinook pilot

An RAF Chinook helicopter captain has been honoured for his ‘outstanding bravery and airmanship’ evacuating battlefield casualties while under heavy fire during a mission in southern Afghanistan. Flight Lieutenant Gerald Wyatt, known as ‘Gez’, has been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) for his actions in last week’s Operational Honours and Awards List. His citation… Read more »

Source: UK MoD, 07-Oct-12

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Eurocopter hands over first Puma Mk2 to UK military

Eurocopter hands over first Puma Mk2 to UK military

The upgrade of UK Ministry of Defence Puma aircraft took a further major step forward yesterday when Eurocopter handed over its first Puma Mk2 aircraft to MOD. This upgrade will significantly enhance the aircraft’s performance, mission capability and safety. The first modified aircraft will fly from Oxford into QinetiQ’s Boscombe Down facility where it will… Read more »

Source: Eurocopter, 13-Sep-12

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20-Jul-12 Boeing CH-47D Summerhill, UK

Aircraft damaged after hitting powerlines on a training flight out of Odiham

20-Jul-12

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Olympic airspace restrictions begin

Olympic airspace restrictions begin

Extra airspace restrictions around London and the Southeast, designed to ensure a safe and secure London 2012 Olympic Games, began on Saturday 14th July. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), National Air Traffic Services (NATS) and the Ministry of Defence have worked together to inform airspace users about the restrictions and how people can continue to… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 16-Jul-12

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RAF Pumas arrive at Territorial Army Centre for Olympics role

RAF Pumas arrive at Territorial Army Centre for Olympics role

RAF Puma helicopters have arrived at Ilford Territorial Army Centre as they prepare for a key role providing air security for the London 2012 Olympic Games. The aircraft from 33 Squadron, based at RAF Benson in Oxfordshire, are part of a multi-layered air security plan. These additional security measures build on the RAF’s existing air… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 16-Jul-12

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Major milestone achieved on Eurocopter’s Puma Mk2 upgrade program for RAF

Major milestone achieved on Eurocopter’s Puma Mk2 upgrade program for RAF

The upgrade of UK Ministry of Defence Puma aircraft took a major step forward last week with Eurocopter completing its first internal qualification of the Puma Mk2 aircraft. This upgrade will significantly enhance the aircraft’s performance, mission capability and safety. The first modified aircraft will fly into the UK in the coming weeks to conclude… Read more »

Source: Eurocopter, 09-Jul-12

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Prince William qualifies as an operational Royal Air Force SAR captain

Prince William qualifies as an operational Royal Air Force SAR captain

The Duke of Cambridge has qualified as an operational captain within the Royal Air Force Search and Rescue Force. Flight Lieutenant Wales, as he is known in the military, will now command Search and Rescue operations in RAF Sea King helicopters. Until now, Flight Lieutenant Wales has only co-piloted the aircraft. The operational captaincy check… Read more »

Source: Prince of Wales website, 07-Jun-12

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06-Jun-12 ZJ121 AgustaWestland AW101 Stanwick, UK

Emergency field landing due to loose/missing tail rotor blade tape.  Stayed overnight and cleared for flight next day

06-Jun-12

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RAF Odiham unveils Chinook gate guardian

RAF Odiham unveils Chinook gate guardian

Government defence secretary Philip Hammond  was at RAF Odiham last Thursday to meet serving RAF personnel and unveil a new ‘Gate Guardian’ – a retired Chinook helicopter which had been donated by Boeing Rotorcraft UK. (see full story) File photo Editor update – the said aircraft flew as 03-08003 in the US Army, and the… Read more »

Source: Basingstoke Observer, 01-Jun-12

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UK – SAR Training Unit celebrates 50 years

UK – SAR Training Unit celebrates 50 years

For the past half century Royal Air Force search and rescue helicopter crews trained by an RAF Valley based unit have saved countless lives. On station to rescue downed arcrew military helicopter crews have been there to pluck to safety all in peril. With search and rescue being, by it’s very nature, often extremely dangerous… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 06-May-12

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07-Apr-12 Boeing CH-47D Yuma, US-Arizona

Royal Air Force Chinook suffered unspecificed “mishap” during training exercise.  It is known that Chinooks ZA671, ZA711 and ZA712 (and maybe a fourth?) are all currently based in Yuma on training work, so subject aircraft will be one of these.

07-Apr-12

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20-Mar-12 AgustaWestland AW101 Colchester, UK

The downdraft of a Merlin helicopter on a training exercise at Colchester General Hospital damaged support poles holding up a covered walkway linking Gainsborough Ward with the main hospital building so badly it had to be taken down.  Cars in the car park – including a police vehicle – suffered broken windscreens.

20-Mar-12

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UK helicopter fleet trains in “Pashtun Jaguar” exercise

UK helicopter fleet trains in “Pashtun Jaguar” exercise

Seventeen aircraft from the UK’s Joint Helicopter Command (JHC) are taking part in a major pre-deployment exercise on Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire, providing support for British land forces due to begin operations in Afghanistan during April. (see full story)

Source: Flightglobal, 14-Mar-12

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UK – National Maritime Museum Cornwall takes delivery of Sea King

UK – National Maritime Museum Cornwall takes delivery of Sea King

National Maritime Museum Cornwall has just installed its biggest object to date as part of the forthcoming blockbuster Search & Rescue exhibition – a 70ft long, 16ft high, 6 tonne Sea King helicopter which had just 1½ inches of clearance through the Museum’s doors. National Maritime Museum Cornwall’s new Search & Rescue exhibition is just… Read more »

Source: National Maritime Museum, 28-Feb-12

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AgustaWestland give assistance to new SAR Exhibition

AgustaWestland give assistance to new SAR Exhibition

Search and Rescue, the new blockbuster exhibition from National Maritime Museum Cornwall invites you to enter the world of the rescue services where ordinary people lead extraordinary lives, risking their life to save yours. Opening on 16 March 2012, the exhibition takes you on an interactive, stimulating and emotive journey into the role of the… Read more »

Source: National Maritime Museum, 04-Jan-12

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2012 Olympics military helicopter support details announced

2012 Olympics military helicopter support details announced

The extent to which Britain’s Armed Forces will support the security effort for next year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games in London was announced today by the Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond. While the safety and security operation for the Games remains for the police to lead on, the Government has agreed that the Ministry of Defence… Read more »

Source: UK MoD, 16-Dec-11

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Upgraded RAF CH-47 simulator ready for training

Upgraded RAF CH-47 simulator ready for training

Today at the Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation, and Education Conference (I/ITSEC), the world’s largest military simulation show, CAE announced that it has completed a major upgrade to one of the CH-47 Chinook dynamic mission simulators located at CAE’s Medium Support Helicopter Aircrew Training Facility (MSHATF) in the United Kingdom, and the Royal Air Force (RAF) is… Read more »

Source: CAE, 29-Nov-11

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RAF helicopter instructor gains World Record

RAF helicopter instructor gains World Record

A helicopter Instructor with No 660 Squadron on the Defence Helicopter Flying School at RAF Shawbury has gained an entry into the Guinness Book of World Records. On 27 March 2011, at the Yeovil Half Marathon, Lieutenant Jim Fraser RN broke a Guinness World Recordâ„¢ by running a half marathon whilst wearing a respirator. He… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 04-Nov-11

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AgustaWestland acquires VSS CATS aircrewman simulator

AgustaWestland acquires VSS CATS aircrewman simulator

Australian company Virtual Simulation Systems (VSS) has completed installation of two Complete Aircrew Training Systems (CATS) at RAF Linton-on-Ouse in the United Kingdom. The CATS simulators will be used by AgustaWestland (AW) as part of a contract to deliver whole crew tactics training. CATS will provide AW with the ability to teach a range of… Read more »

Source: Virtual Simulation Systems, 02-Nov-11

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Low-flying Chinook spooked horses, trainer claims

Low-flying Chinook spooked horses, trainer claims

The Ministry of Defence has begun an investigation after Ann Duffield and her husband, the former jockey George Duffield, complained after the Chinook swooped low over their animals.  Mrs Duffield said the pilot had shown no regard for the safety of horses and riders as it flew near her stables. (Full story)

21-Oct-11

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RAF celebrates 40 years of Puma ops

RAF celebrates 40 years of Puma ops

The Royal Air Force Puma helicopter officially celebrates its 40th anniversary today; with the first aircraft having undertaken its first operational flight on 29th September 1971. Video of Puma in Action The Puma helicopter, currently serving with 33 and 230 Squadrons at RAF Benson, has seen stalwart Service over its forty year career, deploying on… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 30-Sep-11

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Royal Air Force SAR teams honoured

Royal Air Force SAR teams honoured

Awards were presented to a Sea King pilot and civilian engineers of the RAF’s 202 Squadron at Leconfield in Yorkshire last week, in recognition of their outstanding performance. The Arthur Barratt Memorial Prize, consisting of a silver salver and cheque, was presented to Flight Lieutenant Andy ‘Spacer’ Johnston by Air Vice-Marshal Barry North, Assistant Chief… Read more »

Source: UK MoD, 29-Aug-11

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Boeing receives UK contract for 14 new Chinooks

Boeing receives UK contract for 14 new Chinooks

Boeing [NYSE: BA] has received a $1.64 billion (£1 billion) contract from the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) to provide 14 new CH-47 Chinook helicopters and associated support for the first five years to the Royal Air Force (RAF). The new-build CH-47 Mark (Mk)-6 Chinooks are part of the MOD’s Strategic Helicopter Vision to modernize… Read more »

Source: Boeing, 22-Aug-11

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UK military publishes independent review of Mull of Kintyre Chinook accident

UK military publishes independent review of Mull of Kintyre Chinook accident

Defence Secretary Dr Liam Fox has today published the conclusions of an independent review into the Chinook Mk2 helicopter crash of June 1994 on the Mull of Kintyre which tragically resulted in the deaths of all 29 people on board. The review, led by Lord Philip and assisted by three Privy Counsellors, examined the evidence… Read more »

Source: UK MoD, 19-Jul-11

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05-Jul-11 Eurocopter SA330 Andover, UK

Helicopter is on its side in a corn field, more details when available.  One report suggests bird strike to blame?

05-Jul-11

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RAF officer trains first female Afghan helicopter pilots

RAF officer trains first female Afghan helicopter pilots

The RAF’s youngest female pilot, Flying Officer Emma Atkinson, is currently training Afghanistan’s first female Air Force helicopter pilots in a small office tucked away in a corner of Kabul’s airport. The ‘Thunder Lab’ flight school is part of the NATO Air Training Command (Afghanistan) and the training given there is designed to help ease… Read more »

Source: UK MoD, 28-Jun-11

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First flight of upgraded Royal Air Force Puma Mk2

First flight of upgraded Royal Air Force Puma Mk2

The first upgraded Puma Mk2 helicopter developed by Eurocopter in a life extension programme for the UK’s Royal Air Force performed its initial flight this week from Eurocopter’s facility at Marignane, France. It is the first helicopter to be modified under the Puma Life Extension Programme, which was approved by the UK Ministry of Defence… Read more »

Source: Eurocopter, 24-Jun-11

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Budget cuts force Britain’s RAF to reduce VVIP fleet

Budget cuts force Britain’s RAF to reduce VVIP fleet

UK’s Royal Air Force has quietly reduced its fleet of VVIP AgustaWestland 109E Powers from three to two from the end of March 2011, apparently a budget cut industry sources tell us.  No indication of this was made when the contract renewed on 1st April (see our story here), but the unexpected move of serial… Read more »

Source: HeliHub.com, 08-May-11

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New doubt cast over Mull of Kintyre Chinook crash cause

New doubt cast over Mull of Kintyre Chinook crash cause

Newly discovered Ministry of Defence documents have cast further doubt on the cause of the Chinook helicopter crash on the Mull of Kintyre in 1994.

Source: BBC, 13-Apr-11

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Defence Helicopter Flying School hosts Raoul Hafner Memorial Lecture

Defence Helicopter Flying School hosts Raoul Hafner Memorial Lecture

The Defence Helicopter Flying School at RAF Shawbury recently hosted the 13th Annual Raoul Hafner memorial lecture. The lectures are held each year at the north Shropshire airbase on aviation subjects with presentations by specialists across the genre. The lectures are held in memory of the Austrian inventor responsible for developing the modern helicopter, Raoul… Read more »

Source: RAF, 12-Apr-11

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Royal Air Force supports Yorkshire Air Ambulance

Royal Air Force supports Yorkshire Air Ambulance

RAF Linton-on-Ouse hosted the Yorkshire Air Ambulance recently when they dropped by to thank the station for their on-going support to the life-saving charity. Group Captain Terry Jones, station commander, welcomed the 160 mph MD902 Explorer helicopter and it’s crew, which was flanked in a unique photograph by a Grob Tutor trainer aircraft of 85… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 07-Apr-11

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Sloane Helicopters contract to maintain 32 Sqn A109 Powers extended

Sloane Helicopters contract to maintain 32 Sqn A109 Powers extended

HeliHub.com has heard qualifed reports that Sloane Helicopters have had their contract to support the Royal Air Force 32 Squadron A109 Powers extended for a further year to 31st March 2012.  While the contract is officially held by AgustaWestland, the Anglo-Italian manufacturer subcontracts the technical support and training services to UK/Eire distributor Sloane Helicopters. The… Read more »

Source: HeliHub.com, 01-Apr-11

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UK scientists demo technology to make brown-out landings safer

UK scientists demo technology to make brown-out landings safer

The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), in conjunction with industry partners, today showcased the development of world leading technology designed to help helicopter pilots land more safely and efficiently in Afghanistan. Scientists from Dstl, part of the Ministry of Defence (MOD), have led the technical development of a pioneering approach to the problem of… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 20-Mar-11

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10-Feb-11 Boeing CH-47 Maker Heights, UK

Hydraulic problems force helicopter to land in field

10-Feb-11

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Royal Air Force SAR celebrates 70 years

Royal Air Force SAR celebrates 70 years

On the 6th February 2011, the RAF Search and Rescue Force (SARF) commemorate seventy years of saving lives. Born out of the Battle of Britain, its predecessor, the Directorate of Air Sea Rescue (ASR) was formed at the HQ of RAF Coastal Command in 1941, with a mandate to form a combined and effective rescue service… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 08-Feb-11

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Boeing begins flight testing UK Chinook Mk4

Boeing begins flight testing UK Chinook Mk4

Boeing [NYSE: BA] and its Boeing Defence UK subsidiary today announced that the Boeing UK Rotorcraft Support team has begun flight testing the first Chinook Mk4 helicopter for the Royal Air Force (RAF). The first flight took place on Dec. 9 in Hampshire, England. “Project JULIUS, as the Mk4 program is known, will modernize the… Read more »

Source: Boeing, 24-Jan-11

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RAF reviews first year of Merlin ops in Afghanistan

RAF reviews first year of Merlin ops in Afghanistan

From Benson to Bastion – today the Royal Air Force Merlin Force marked their first anniversary on Operation HERRICK. Following transportation to Afghanistan, re-assembly and pre-flight checks, the Merlin Force officially declared that they were ready for operational flying on the front line a full year ago. The Merlins have spent those twelve months transporting… Read more »

Source: RAF, 30-Nov-10

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Three seriously hurt in Puma crash win £1M damages case against UK MoD

Three seriously hurt in Puma crash win £1M damages case against UK MoD

The MoD have accepted liability, but the exact settlement has yet to be decided. The men are suing for “injury, loss and damage”. The accident happened in August 2007 during low-level flight near the Army’s Catterick base.

Source: Daily Record, 26-Oct-10

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Discovery Channel launches ‘Frontline Battle Machines’ with UK troops in Afghanistan

Discovery Channel launches ‘Frontline Battle Machines’ with UK troops in Afghanistan

Monday, 25th October sees that start of a new series “Frontline Battle Machines” on the Discovery Channel. The series, which is presented by Discovery’s “Wheeler Dealer” frontman Mike Brewer, takes an up close and personal look at the UK’s equipment and personnel operating in Afghanistan. Explaining why he made the series Mike said, “We were… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 21-Oct-10

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Royal Air Force Chinook pilots honoured for bravery

Royal Air Force Chinook pilots honoured for bravery

19 Royal Air Force personnel have been honoured in the Armed Forces Operational Awards and Joint Commander’s Commendations for their bravery and service in Afghanistan and during UK Operations and Search and Rescue missions. Three Chinook pilots based at RAF Odiham in Hampshire were awarded the prestigious Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) one of which was… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 27-Sep-10

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RAF Sea King crew hailed for Cumbrian flood rescues at Shephard 2010 SAR Awards

RAF Sea King crew hailed for Cumbrian flood rescues at Shephard 2010 SAR Awards

A rescue helicopter crew from 22 Sqn ‘C’ Flight of the UK’s Royal Air Force have become the first winners of the new annual Shephard SAR award.

Source: Shephard, 23-Sep-10

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Prince William becomes a fully-operational SAR pilot

Prince William becomes a fully-operational SAR pilot

Prince William has today graduated from his Search and Rescue training course at Royal Air Force Valley in Anglesey, Wales. He will now join C Flight of Number 22 Squadron, remaining at RAF Valley, as a fully-qualified, fully-operational Search and Rescue pilot flying the Sea King helicopter. Prince William will begin his operational service as… Read more »

Source: UK MoD, 18-Sep-10

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17-Aug-10 (Serial TBA) Boeing CH-47 Conwy, UK

17-Aug-10

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10-Aug-10 Boeing CH-47 Nahr-e Saraj, Afghanistan (1F)

10-Aug-10

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02-Aug-10 ZH899 Boeing CH-47 Quedgley, UK

02-Aug-10

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RAF Merlin squadron reflects on Helmand deployment

RAF Merlin squadron reflects on Helmand deployment

After several weeks providing support to troops on the ground in Helmand province, the Merlin helicopter crews from 28 (Army Cooperation) Squadron’s B Flight, based at RAF Benson in Oxfordshire, are coming home. B Flight arrived at Bastion Airfield in late May 2010. Following multiple detachments in Iraq over the past five years, this was… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 30-Jul-10

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Upgrades for RAF Chinooks include iPad-Like slate

Upgrades for RAF Chinooks include iPad-Like slate

The military equivalent of an iPad for pilots’ mission planning will be among the features included in the avionics upgrade of 46 Royal Air Force Chinooks to the Mk.4 standard, said Peter Hitchcock, Avionics VP at Thales UK

Source: Defense News, 22-Jul-10

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23-Jun-10 (Serial TBA) AgustaWestland AW101 Lashkar Gar, Afghanistan

23-Jun-10

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New RAF helicopter crews train for Afghanistan

New RAF helicopter crews train for Afghanistan

Royal Air Force helicopter crews have been training together for the first time in the Jordanian desert. As many prepare to go to Afghanistan for the first time, over 300 personnel from RAF Benson and RAF Odiham took part in Exercise Desert Vortex. Wing Commander John Watson was the Detachment Commander during the month long… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 22-Jun-10

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RAF Chinook pilot honoured for courage in Afghanistan

RAF Chinook pilot honoured for courage in Afghanistan

A Chinook pilot from RAF Odiham was presented with a Distinguished Flying Cross for his ‘superior flying skills’ in Afghanistan at a prestigious ceremony at Buckingham Palace on Friday 4 June 2010. Flight Lieutenant Marc Heal, aged 29, was amongst personnel from various stations across the UK to be honoured in the Armed Forces Operational… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 09-Jun-10

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RAF Chinook pilot tells how his helmet saved his life

RAF Chinook pilot tells how his helmet saved his life

Now that the Ministry of Defence has lifted its embargo, the helmet has been returned to him and he has given the BBC his first broadcast interview.

Source: BBC, 09-Jun-10

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21-May-10 (Serial TBA) Sea King Nad Ali, Helmand Province, Afghanistan

21-May-10

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Teenager cautioned after shining laser light at RAF rescue helicopter

Teenager cautioned after shining laser light at RAF rescue helicopter

The 14-year-old distracted a Sea King crew searching for a missing kayaker off the river Tees estuary by sweeping the sky in front of them with a narrow beam of green light

Source: Guardian, 07-May-10

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Afghan National Air Corps Spreads Its Wings

The Kandahar Air Wing of the Afghanistan National Air Corps has come on leaps and bounds since its arrival in October 2009. Now there are 572 personnel established on the wing, including experienced pilots, trainee pilots, engineers, logistics and admin. Wednesday and Sundays are official training days when taskings are concentrated on developing the combat… Read more »

Source: Royal Air Force, 09-Apr-10

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British Chinook pilot in Afghanistan shot between the eyes – and lands safely

British Chinook pilot in Afghanistan shot between the eyes – and lands safely

A British pilot got shot between the eyes as he flew his Chinook helicopter into a firefight in Afghanistan – but he still managed to land safely and rescue all 20 people on board.

Source: Sky News, 12-Mar-10

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Prince William starts RAF rescue training

If successful on the course, he will become a fully operational pilot with one of the six UK-based RAF Search and Rescue Force flights later this year

Source: BBC, 29-Jan-10

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UK confirms plan to deploy ‘new’ Chinooks to Afghanistan

UK confirms plan to deploy ‘new’ Chinooks to Afghanistan

The UK Royal Air Force has begun flying its first two of eight Boeing CH-47 Chinook HC3 transport helicopters, and says the type “will gradually join the routine rotation of aircraft through operational deployment in Afghanistan”

Source: Flightglobal, 16-Jan-10

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New Chinooks delivered after software problems led to 8 years storage

New Chinooks delivered after software problems led to 8 years storage

The first of the Chinook Mk 3 helicopters bound for Afghanistan have arrived at a military base in Hampshire after an eight-year delay.

Source: BBC, 14-Jan-10

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Boeing Delivers first Mk3 Chinook to UK Royal Air Force

Boeing Delivers first Mk3 Chinook to UK Royal Air Force

Boeing have confirmed the Nov. 30 delivery of the first converted Chinook Mk3 helicopter to the Royal Air Force

Source: Boeing, 21-Dec-09

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UK Defence Budget reprioritised to find money to buy 22 Chinooks for Afghanistan ops

UK Defence Budget reprioritised to find money to buy 22 Chinooks for Afghanistan ops

The Ministry of Defence will give a major boost to the military helicopter fleet with 22 new Chinook helicopters, the Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth announced today.

Source: RAF, 17-Dec-09

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Fight to keep RAF Chivenor SAR base open 24×7 steps up a gear

Fight to keep RAF Chivenor SAR base open 24×7 steps up a gear

The fight to keep 24-hour search and rescue cover at RAF Chivenor has been taken to the Senedd by Pembrokeshire AMs.

Source: Western Telegraph, 15-Dec-09

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First British all-female helicopter crew takes on Taliban

First British all-female helicopter crew takes on Taliban

The RAF is to fly its first all-woman combat helicopter crew into action in southern Afghanistan.  The four women are expected to fly a number of missions taking troops and supplies to the frontline against the Taliban in Helmand. They will also airlift casualties to the hospital at Camp Bastion.

Source: Times, 23-Nov-09

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First RAF Merlin arrives in Afghanistan

First RAF Merlin arrives in Afghanistan

The Merlin will perform a wide range of military tasks, making it a valuable asset for British forces.  The helicopter was stripped down and transported by a C-17 aircraft from RAF Brize Norton and has arrived at Camp Bastion for re-assembly and extensive pre-flight checks before it takes to the Afghan skies.

Source: UK MoD, 17-Nov-09

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09-Nov-09 (Serial TBA) AgustaWestland Merlin HC.3 Holtville Airstrip, US-California

09-Nov-09

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RAF Merlin helicopter crews ready for Afghanistan

The first Merlin helicopter crews are ready to deploy to Afghanistan following pre-deployment training in the United States.

Source: Rotorhub, 06-Nov-09

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£408M upgrade for RAF Chinooks in Afghanistan

£408M upgrade for RAF Chinooks in Afghanistan

This upgrade will include a £128m contract which will give the whole Chinook fleet a significant boost by fitting a more powerful engine, enabling the Chinooks to operate more effectively in the hot summers and high altitudes of Afghanistan.

Source: Rotorhub, 24-Sep-09

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