Russian Helicopters Holding Company (subsidiary of Oboronprom, part of Rostec State Corporation) has delivered the first Mi-26T heavy transport helicopter to the Ministry of Emergency Situations (MES) of Kazakhstan. This is the first helicopter of the type in the history of Kazakhstan’s civil aviation to be put into operation in the country, the holding’s press-service reports.
The Mi-26T is a unique helicopter capable of providing invaluable help to Kazakhstan’s MES. The helicopter was delivered to the customer after an overhaul and upgrade carried out by Novosibirsk Aircraft Repair Plant (part of Russian Helicopters). The upgraded Mi-26T performed a ferry flight from Novosibirsk to Astana in October 2013. After that the vehicle was inspected by specialists of Kazaviaspas, the air rescue division of the Kazakhstan’s MES. The contract between the ministry and Russian Helicopters assumes the overhaul and upgrade of two Mi-26s. These vehicles have not been operated over the last 20 years, the press-service noted.
A group of specialists of Novosibirsk Aircraft Repair Plant in cooperation with engineers from Kazaviaspas prepared the helicopters for the overhaul in March 2012. In May 2012 the vehicles were delivered to Novosibirsk by UTair’s Mi-26T using external sling (they have travelled for more than 2000 km).
“This was the first time we had to repair and upgrade helicopters that had not been in service for 20 years”, -Yuri Lipatnikov, Managing Director of Novosibirsk Aircraft Repair Plant, said. “It was a unique task in terms of its complexity, but Russian Helicopters Holding Company has once again proven its capability of providing a high quality service at the most complex level”.
The helicopters have been overhauled by Novosibirsk Aircraft Repair Plant. After that they were upgraded to civilian Mi-26T version. Mi-26T helicopters are fitted with state-of-the-art avionics and emergency and rescue equipment can be used for a wide range of operations including firefighting and evacuation.
The Mi-26T is the world’s largest serial civil helicopter used for performing complex transportation and rescue missions. Its payload is 20 tons (the cargo may be transported inside its fuselage or using the external sling). The military version is capable of transporting 82 soldiers in full gear, while the medical version of Mi-26T is able to accommodate up to 60 stretcher patients. The tanker version of Mi-26T can carry up to 14 tons of fuel. The firefighting version is equipped with an external VSU-15A helibucket with a capacity of 15 tons.
The second overhauled and upgraded Mi-26T should arrive in Kazakhstan soon. It will be used to ensure the safety of work carried out at the Atyrau Shelf, Russian Helicopters noted.