Westland Wessex

From Academic Kids

The Westland Wessex was a turbine-powered version of the Sikorsky S-58 Chocktaw, developed under license by Westland Aircraft, initially for the Royal Navy. The Wessex was built at Yeovil in Somerset.

The design was adapted in the early 1960s for the RAF to become a general-purpose helicopter capable of troop-carrying, air ambulance and ground attack roles. It was first used by the RAF in 1962, and did not finally retire until 2003, being the main transport helicopter until the introduction of the Aérospatiale Puma. The bright yellow RAF machines used for air-sea or mountain rescue duties became especially famous and saved many lives.

Wessex helicopters were also used by the Queen's Flight of the RAF to transport VIPs including members of the British Royal Family, from 1969 to 1998. Those Royal helicopters were designated HCC4 and were essentially similar to the HC2 but with an upgraded interior and additional navigation equipment. A later version used by Royal Navy commandos was the HC5.

Contents

Specifications (Wessex HC.2)

General Characteristics

  • Crew: two pilots
  • Capacity: 16 troops or 8 stretchers
  • Length: 65 ft 8 in (20.03 m)
  • Main rotor diameter: 56 ft 0 in (17.07 m)
  • Height: 16 ft 2 in (4.93 m)
  • Main rotor area: 2,463 ft² (229 m²)
  • Empty: 8,304 lb (3,767 kg)
  • Loaded: lb ( kg)
  • Maximum takeoff: 13,500 lb (6,123 kg)
  • Powerplant: 2x Rolls-Royce Gnome turboshafts, hp ( kW)

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 133 mph (212 km/h)
  • Service ceiling: 10,000 ft (3,050 m)
  • Rate of climb: ft/min ( m/min)
  • Main rotor loading: lb/ft² ( kg/m²)
  • Power/Mass: hp/lb ( kW/kg)

External links

  • RAF Museum (http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/westland-wessex-hcc4.htm)
  • RAF site (http://www.armedforces.co.uk/raf/listings/l0047.html)

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