|Type||Multipurpose utility helicopter|
|Maiden flight||20 December 2001|
|Primary user||United States Marine Corps|
|Developed from||UH-1N Twin Huey|
|Variants||Bell 212 |
The Bell Helicopter UH-1Y Venom is a medium size military helicopter. The Venom is currently in low-rate production to replace the United States Marine Corps's aging fleet of UH-1N Twin Huey light utility helicopters first introduced in the early 1970s.
Design and Development
The UH-1 Huey is considered the most successful military helicopter in history, with over 16,000 airframes manufactured since 1956. The UH-1Y variant updates the UH-1 design for the 21st century. Its most noticeable upgrade, as compared to previous variants, is a four-bladed, all-composite rotor system designed to withstand ballistics up to 23 mm. In addition to the rotor system, the UH-1Y has upgraded engines and transmission, 170% increased payload over UH-1N, almost 50% greater range and maximum speed, a digital cockpit with flat panel multifunctional displays, and an 84 percent parts commonality with the AH-1Z.
Originally the UH-1Y was to have been remanufactured from UH-1N airframes, but in April 2005 the aircraft were approved to be built as new helicopters.
The UH-1Y model was developed in conjunction with the new AH-1Z SuperCobra to maximize cost savings and minimize required maintenance parts (Bell claims an 85% part commonality between the two models). The Y model updates an airframe that has been central to the Marine Corps aviation in Iraq. The Huey has many mission requirements including command and control (C2), escort, reconnaissance, troop transport, medical evacuation and close air support. Typically detachments of 2-4 Hueys have been deployed with detachments of 4-8 Cobras. The forward mounted weaponry of the Cobra combined with the door guns of the Huey provides a 240° field of fire.
Over the years new avionics and radios, in addition to modern door guns and safety upgrades, have greatly increased the UH-1N's empty weight. With a maximum speed of approximately 100kts and an inability to lift much more than its own crew, fuel and ammunition, the UH-1N, while useful, is limited in its utility.
The Y model upgrades pilot avionics to a glass cockpit, adds further safety modifications and provides the Huey with a modern FLIR system. However, the biggest improvement is an increase in engine power. By replacing the engines and the two bladed rotor system with four composite blades the Y model will return the Huey to the utility role it was designed for.
According to Bell the Y model will have 125% higher payload than the UH-1N, and almost 50% greater range and maximum cruise speed than the UH-1N. The Venom can keep up with the other helicopters it is supposed to be escorting rather than slowing them down and making them easier targets. The UH-1Y will have the power needed to maneuver aggressively and evasively. Ground forces commanders riding in the Venom will have all the radios and fire power they need and the range of the transport helicopters carrying their men.
- United States Marine Corps, in testing.
- Crew: 1-2
- Capacity: 6,661 lb (3,021 kg) including up to 10 crash worthy passenger seats, 6 litters or equivalent cargo
- Length: 58 ft 4 in (m)
- Rotor diameter: 48 ft 10 in (m)
- Height: 14 ft 7 in (4.5 m)
- Disc area: 1,808 ft² (168.0 m²)
- Empty weight: 11,839 lb (5,369 kg)
- Useful load: 6,661 lb (3,021 kg)
- Max takeoff weight: 18,500 lb (8,390 kg)
- Powerplant: 2× General Electric T700-GE-401C turboshaft, 1,828 eshp 2.5 min, 1695 shp 30 min. (kW) each
- Never exceed speed: 198 kts (227 mph, 366 km/h)
- Maximum speed: 164 kts (191 mph (30 min), 304 km/h)
- Cruise speed: 158 kts, 293 km/h (long range cruise LRC 135kts, 250 km/h)
- Stall speed: knots (mph, km/h)
- Range: 130 nm with 2182 lb, 990 kg payload (mi,km)
- Service ceiling: 20,000+ ft (6,100+ m)
- Rate of climb: 2,520 ft/min (12.8 m/s)
- Disc loading: lb/ft² (kg/m²)
- Power/mass: hp/lb (W/kg)
2 external stations, 2 pintle mounts
- UH-1Y Venom page on US Navy RDA site
- UH-1Y Venom page on BellHelicopter.com
- PMA-276: USMC Light/Attack Helicopter Program web site
- UH-1Y Venom page on GlobalSecurity.org
- UH-1Y page on Naval-Technology.com
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