Volga-Dnepr Airlines has delivered a prototype of the Turkish T129 attack helicopter onboard an IL-76TD-90VD cargo flight from Ankara to Berlin, Germany, and back to Turkey.
Loading the 13-metre helicopter into the Ilyushin’s cargo hold using hoists required the removal of the T129’s rotor blades, vertical stabilizer, wing and detachable equipment. The rear chassis of the helicopter was also removed and replaced by a special chassis for the transportation that reduced the height of the helicopter from 3.4 metres to 3.17m. All of the components removed to facilitate the loading process were transported to the destination point onboard the same IL-76TD-90VD flight.
The prototype of the T129 helicopter was delivered to Germany in order to be presented at the ILA-2014 Berlin Air Show, which took place at the Berlin ExpoCenter Airport. The flight was operated on behalf of Air Charter Service (ACS) in Turkey and included the helicopter’s return journey to Ankara.
The T129 attack helicopter was developed by Turkish Aerospace Industries in cooperation with AgustaWestland, one of the world’s leading helicopter manufacturers. At present the T129 modification is in the inventory of the Turkish Air Force but ILA-2014 in Berlin enabled the helicopter prototype to be promoted to the international military market.