Feb 8, 2014

UK sets 2019 target for AW101 Merlin HM2 Crowsnest introduction

The UK Royal Navy will field a new-generation organic airborne early warning capability in 2019, three years after it retires the last of its aged Westland Sea Kings currently tasked with protecting its surface fleet.
Dubbed Crowsnest, the project to replace the Fleet Air Arm’s Sea King Mk7 airborne surveillance and control system helicopters had previously been due to deliver its first adapted AgustaWestland AW101 Merlin HM2s for service trials from 2020, but only to achieve full operational capability in 2022.
The introduction of Crowsnest 18 months early will ensure HMS Queen Elizabeth has the full range of capabilities when it enters service.
The UK’s last Sea King Mk7s are due to be retired in March 2016.

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