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News

AgustaWestland awarded Igor I. Sikorsky International trophy


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AgustaWestland Helicopters
: 29 May, 2009  (Company News)
In a ceremony at the AHS International annual forum, AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, was awarded the Igor I. Sikorsky International Trophy. The award was made to AgustaWestland as recognition to the company that designed and manufactured a pure helicopter which established an official world speed record during the preceding calendar year in the class E-1 categories according to the rules of the Federation Aeronautique International.
On August 18, 2008, a factory standard AgustaWestland Grand helicopter, flown by pilots Scott Kasprowicz and Steve Sheik, set a new world speed record for circling the globe in only 11 days and seven hours. This extraordinary feat broke the previous 1996 record by almost 6 days and was validated by both the National Aeronautic Association and the Federation Aeronautique International.

The success of the Grand Helicopter breaking the around-the-world speed record reflects AgustaWestlandís dedication to the introduction of innovative technologies into its rotorcraft. Unlike previous record setting flights, this mission was performed in a factory-standard, executive configured helicopter. No mission specific modifications or additional fuel Tanks were added to improve the Grandís performance. The Helicopter operated below its certified gross weight and its 213-gallon fuel capacity was unmodified.

Pilots Scott Kasprowicz and Steve Sheik set off on their remarkable journey from La Guardia Airport in New York at 3:14 am on August 7, 2008. Travelling eastbound, the duo covered 20,888 nautical miles, maintaining an average speed of 137 km/hr, which included time for refuelling, rest and maintenance. During the trip, the helicopter, owned by Kasprowicz, maintained an impressive average speed of 150 knots over the ground while flying through 20 countries, 24 time zones and 49 US states. Another accomplishment on this historic flight included a New York to London speed record, which was flown in 40 hours 58 minutes and 27 seconds breaking the old record by 35 hours.

The Grand is a top-of-the-range light twin Helicopter developed to meet a wide range of market requirements and provides levels of cabin space and payload that until now could only be met by larger, more expensive helicopters. With its powerful and reliable Pratt & Whitney PW207 turbine engines, the Helicopter has the exceptional ability to deliver even when faced with challenging environmental conditions. Its superior features in terms of performance, flexibility and cost effectiveness enabled the crew to maximize the time necessary to make the world record setting flight.
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