Vectra Group to Operate Mi-171A2 in India
High level of defence cooperation of Russia and India has been lasted for more than 60 years. The Mi-171A2 helicopter is another Russian product that will further strengthened the bilateral defence ties between India and Russia. Indian company, Vectra Group, will be the first foreign operator of the convertible Mi-171A2, as well as partner of Russian Helicopters holding company in the procedure of type certificate approval in India. Contract with Vectra Group has been signed in November 2017. The helicopter production is launched and going on as per schedule.
Russian helicopter manufacturers are offering an entirely new product for Indian customers. Modern, cost-effective, safe – these three words can characterize the new Mi-171A2 utility helicopter. Designed on the basis of the world's most popular twin-engine Mi-8/171, the Mi-171A2 embodies the best performances of these world-famous vehicles – and surpasses them, setting new standards for economic efficiency and safety.
The Russian designer, Mikhail Mil, the creator of the world's most popular twin-engine Mi-8 helicopter, has called Russia "a country created for helicopters". Considering its stricter helicopter requirements, India too suits the description. India’s climate and landscape, the basing peculiarities are not suitable for every machine. The helicopters developed by the Mil design bureau have already shown their capabilities in India and proved their high reputation. More than 200 helicopters of Mi-8/171 family are used in India for both military purposes and civilian missions, and the Mi-171A2 is set to be the newest among them.
The Mi-171A2 has significant differences from its predecessors. Upgraded rotor system has significantly improved efficiency of the main rotor and stability of the helicopter in all flight modes; maximum and cruising speed of the helicopter as well as its capacity are distinctively increased. The modernized suite of helicopter-integrated flight and navigation equipment and radio communication facilities expanded the field of helicopter application. The Mi-171A2 can be effectively used in high mountains, high temperatures and high humidity. Integrated flight and navigation equipment enables the helicopter to be successfully operated day and night, in simple and severe weather conditions, as well as over the water surface.
The helicopter has incorporated more than 100 essential key changes and improvements, which improve the flight performance of the helicopter, upgrade the operating system, and reduce the cost of flight hours. Unlike its predecessors, the Mi-171A2 will be operated in accordance with its technical condition, which means that major repairs will be replaced with control and recovery works, and the frequency of scheduled maintenance will decrease. The maintenance of the helicopter is significantly simplified using health and usage monitoring system.
The Mi-171A2 has been certified to category "A" meeting most stringent safety requirements applicable to civil helicopters. Moreover, another important feature of the Mi-171A2 is that it is the first convertible certified helicopter of Mi-8/171 type. This allows the transportation of both goods and passengers. Currently, the procedure for recognition of the helicopter type certificate by the Aviation Authorities of India has already been launched.
Mi-171A2 helicopter provides ample business opportunities for Russia in India. It will be available in transport, passenger, firefighting, search and rescue, medical evacuation, and VIP configurations. The Mi-171A2 is also ideally suited for India's hot tropical climate. This helicopter adds to marketability of Vectra Group and enhances the company’s position in helicopter operations market.