More Grist To The Mil’s Mill

Jul 13, 2016 Paul Jackson | ShowNews

It’s a Transformer, but it’s not a toy. Ukrainian Helicopters’ Skytransformer version of the Mil “Hip” medium rotorcraft is being promoted on stand 3/E110 and has a presence (and a half) in the static display.

The “add-on” display, comprising a section of fuselage, is necessary to represent the optional passenger interior, because Ukrainian Helicopters is offering a versatile aircraft that can change its interior at short notice to tackle the next task on the list. Transformer is the outcome of the company’s more than a decade of experience in numerous stabilization, peacekeeping, humanitarian and relief missions in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America.

The white-painted helicopter has its tail rotor on the left side, which means that it is what the East calls an Mi-8M and the West says is an Mi-17. Either way, it’s a TV-1 subvariant. Ukrainian Helicopters’ sales pitch is, “Air ambulance: Transformed to anything in 40 minutes.” In humanitarian form, the helicopter accommodates two in intensive-care modules, three on stretchers and two attendants.

No, they didn’t build it here. Ukrainian Helicopters brought an extra display fuselage, as the manufacturer is offering a versatile “Skytransformer” aircraft allowing an operator to change its interior at short notice.

The white-painted helicopter has its tail rotor on the left side, which means that it is what the East calls an Mi-8M and the West says is an Mi-17. Either way, it’s a TV-1 subvariant.

Ukrainian Helicopters’ sales pitch is, “Air ambulance: Transformed to anything in 40 minutes.” In humanitarian form, the helicopter accommodates two in intensive-care modules, three on stretchers and two attendants.

A SkyTrack communication system allows medical attendants to consult with specialists on the ground during the return flight, the system also transmitting the patients’ vital parameters to assist diagnosis.

That medical interior can be swapped for folding bench seating for 21 passengers, plus a luggage compartment for 320 kg (705 pounds); or the Combo configuration, with between five and 10 individual “comfortable” seats, separated by a partition from between 2,000 and 3,000 kg (4,409 and 6,613 pounds) of cargo. As a pure freighter, the Mi-8M can transport 4,000 kg (8,818 pounds) in the cabin, of 3,000 kg underslung.

For search and rescue, the interior includes one medical module, three stretchers, two attendants’ seats, foldable bench seats, a rescue winch and a stock of survival equipment. In all cases, the helicopter is fitted in the chin position with an infrared turret on a Flir Systems Polytech mounting.

The necessity of a Flir sensor is confirmed, says Ukrainian Helicopters, from the company’s experience in Somalia, where medical flights on behalf of the UN cannot be flown between 1600 and 0400 hours. Further capability comes from an infrared searchlight coupled to the Flir and pilots’ night vision goggles.

Perversely, some factions even object to UN mercy flights, so there is Kevlar armor that protects the helicopter from small-arms fire, and an airborne missile-protection system operating in an automatic mode to defeat surface-to-air missiles.

White-painted Mils have already done much for humanity. Thanks to Ukrainian Helicopters, they can now do more. versatile “Skytransformer” aircraft allowing an operator to change its interior at short notice.

(http://aviationweek.com/shownews/more-grist-mil-s-mill)

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