Of course as soon as you change the rotor head for a folding version (and not quite sure if a cab that size could be manually folded at sea, i.e. powered head) then you're into time consuming and very expensive flight test to requalify the aircraft.Ron5 wrote:Long time ago they said they wanted to do that but the challenge was adding navalized kit such as folding rotors and tail might hike the price up to where it competes with NH90.J. Tattersall wrote:Interesting point, does anyone know if Leonardo has proposed a navalised version? Not a trivial task, but interesting none the less.Ron5 wrote:Still think a navalized AW149 (Puma replacement candidate) would make a great ships helicopter to supplement RN Wildcat.
Not a trivial task true, but not that hard either. The AW149 composite body and the firms expertise greatly helps. AW claim very few components are not seawater resistant. Interestingly, Egypt bought some unmodified to operate from their gater navy.
Also not sure whether the current oleos are qualified for higher vertical loads for naval ops, and if operated from DD/FF or smaller then deck lock system probably needed. Also not sure if the current land based version comes with flot gear, life-raft, SARbe, appropriate crew emergency egress etc. etc. Clearly none of this impossible but time, cost and all racking up the empty mass of the aircraft.