Spanish NH90 takes to air

Jan. 25, 2013 at 3:43 PM

ALBACETE, Spain, Jan. 25 (UPI) -- The first NH90 military helicopter assembled in Spain has successfully performed its maiden flight, a milestone for its production in the country.

NH Industries, which has headquarters in France, is owned by Eurocopter, AgustaWestland and Fokker Aerostructures. Under a 2006 contract, a Spanish version of the multi-role aircraft is to be produced for the Spanish army airmobile force by Eurocopter Espana's facility in Albacete, Spain.

The aircraft flown, the first delivery aircraft under the contract, will be transferred to Spain this year.

"This represents a major milestone for Spain, which now assumes a role as a helicopter manufacturer together with its partners, France and Germany," said NH Industries.

"Eurocopter Espana's site in Albacete will be fully involved in the entire life cycle for these helicopters, from the design stage through to flight testing and certification, component manufacture, the final assembly line and integrated support."

The twin-engine NH90 has a maximum speed of 186 miles per hour, a range of 497 miles and a service ceiling of 20,000 feet. Twelve countries operate it.

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