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MD Helicopters Announces New MD 540F, Enterprise to Introduce First New Helicopter in 15 Years

Dépèche transmise le 3 avril 2012 par Business Wire

MD Helicopters Announces New MD 540F, Enterprise to Introduce First New Helicopter in 15 Years

MD Helicopters Announces New MD 540F, Enterprise to Introduce First New Helicopter in 15 Years

MESA, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MD Helicopters Inc. (MDHI) released details today of its new armed scout helicopter - the MD 540F, the newest addition to MD’s fleet of single engine turbine helicopters. The 540F is an upgrade to the popular MD 530F; boasting a 6-bladed, fully articulated rotor blade system made up entirely of composite material, in addition to a more rugged landing skid built for heavier take-off and landing weights.

“The 540F will be a lethal fighting machine”

“This aircraft will be a game changer for our company,” commented Ms. Lynn Tilton, CEO of MDHI. “The commercial and military markets have long sought an affordable, light, single engine helicopter that can perform exceptionally well at hot and high altitudes while carrying a larger useful load. The MD 540F will be that aircraft. Our engineers have bolstered performance to achieve a dramatic increase in max gross take-off weight and useful load capability. This increase will allow the MD 540F to carry a full avionics and weapons package while hovering at 6,000 feet/95°F.”

The MD 540F will be equipped with a fully integrated digital glass cockpit. Information will be displayed to the pilots on large, easy to read, multi-function color displays, and directly onto the pilot’s eyes using a sophisticated Helmet Display and Tracking System (HDTS). The weapons system will include fixed forward firing rockets and guns, laser guided rockets, and Hellfire missiles. The Targeting FLIR with laser designator coupled with the HDTS and laser guided rockets or Hellfire missile, will allow the pilot to easily locate and destroy hostile targets - day or night.

“The 540F will be a lethal fighting machine,” said Tilton. “The 540F will carry much of the same punch as the heavier attack helicopters at a fraction of the acquisition expense and life cycle operation costs. Using precise aim points and laser guided missiles and rockets, the MD 540F will be able to destroy enemy armor and infantry positions with little collateral battle damage.”

The increased useful load will allow the armed version of the 540F to carry an advanced, lightweight weapons platform with four stations. Various mixes of guns, rockets and missiles can be carried simultaneously.

Development of the MD 540F is ongoing, and flight tests have commenced. The armed version will be on display at the Army Aviation Association of America (Quad-A) convention in Nashville, TN. Certification is projected for the 1st quarter of 2013.

About MD Helicopters

MD Helicopters, Inc. is located in Mesa, Arizona and manufactures single- and twin-engine small- to mid-sized helicopters, including the innovative no tail rotor design that provides safer, quieter, and confined-area access capability. MD Helicopters, Inc. is owned by Patriarch Partners, LLC, a private equity and investment firm headquartered in New York City. For additional information visit http://www.mdhelicopters.com

About Patriarch Partners

Patriarch Partners, LLC, is a private equity firm and holding company managing 76 companies with annual revenues of more than $8 billion. Founded by Wall Street veteran Lynn Tilton in 2000, Patriarch is dedicated to saving American manufacturing jobs by saving American companies that have fallen from economic favor. Since its inception, Patriarch has bought more than 150 companies, and in so doing has saved over 250,000 jobs. Patriarch’s portfolio includes a broad range of industrial concerns including Dura Automotive, American LaFrance, Denali, and MD Helicopters, in addition to iconic American brands such as Rand McNally, Spiegel Catalogs and Stila Cosmetics. Under Ms. Tilton's leadership, Patriarch has become the largest woman-owned business in America employing more than 120,000 employees. For more information, please visit: http://www.patriarchpartners.com

Business Wire

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