Mon, Feb 06, 2012
SAR And Utility Aircraft Based On The CN235 Airlifter
The 13th HC-144A Ocean Sentry maritime patrol aircraft has been
delivered by Airbus Military to the U.S. Coast Guard from its final
assembly line in Seville, Spain. The handover came two months ahead
of the contractual delivery date. The HC-144A is based on the
Airbus Military CN235 tactical airlifter, more than 250 of which
are operated by 27 countries.
In addition to search and rescue, the Coast Guard is utilizing
the Ocean Sentry’s superior endurance and flexibility for
missions including maritime patrol, cargo and personnel transport,
intelligence/surveillance/reconnaissance, and disaster relief.
This is the second Ocean Sentry delivery under a contract
awarded in 2010, which calls for a 14th in mid-2012 and includes
remaining options for up to five additional aircraft. The Coast
Guard exercised an option for a 15th in August 2011. Coast Guard
plans call for acquiring a total of 36 HC-144A Ocean Sentries. The
HC-144A can remain airborne for more than nine hours, compared to
just four hours for the legacy HU-25 jet that it is replacing.
Airbus Military delivers the Ocean Sentry equipped with a search
radar, electro-optical and infrared cameras, an Automatic
Identification System for data collection from vessels at sea, and
a communications suite.
The Ocean Sentry’s rear cargo ramp enables easy loading and
unloading of the Coast Guard's palletized mission system. During
airlift, cargo, and MEDEVAC missions, the mission system is
removed, freeing up the large cabin for additional transport
capacity. The rear ramp also can be opened in flight to deploy
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