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MD Helicopters MD 600

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MD 600N
MD 600N (Helicopters of America), with NOTAR
Type Light utility helicopter
Manufacturer McDonnell Douglas Helicopter Systems
MD Helicopters, Inc.
Primary user US Border Patrol
Developed from MD Helicopters MD 500

The MD Helicopters MD 600N is a light utility civilian helicopter. It is a stretched eight-seat development of the five-seat MD 520N helicopter.


McDonnell Douglas Helicopter Systems (MD Helicopters since 1999) first announced it was developing a stretched MD 520N in late 1994, at that time designated the MD 630N.[1] The prototype, a modified MD 530F, had made its first flight on November 22 1994. McDonnell Douglas gave the go-ahead for the production aircraft, redesignated the MD 600N, in March 1995.

McDonnell Douglas stretched the MD 520N fuselage by inserting a plug aft of the cockpit/cabin bulkhead and stretching the NOTAR tail boom. The larger fuselage allows for an extra (middle) row of seats. Other differences compared with the MD 520N include a new six blade main rotor (the MD 520N has a five blade unit) and a more powerful Allison (now Rolls-Royce) 250 turboshaft.

The prototype was modified to MD 600N standard with a production standard engine and tail boom and flew in November 1995, followed the next month by the first MD 600N production prototype.[1] Certification was awarded on May 15 1997, and deliveries began that June.

Following the 1997 Boeing/McDonnell Douglas' merger, Boeing sold the former MD civil helicopter lines to Netherlands-based RDM Holdings in early 1999.[1]


The NOTAR no-tail-rotor version is popular with law enforcement because of its very low noise levels. Instead of an anti-torque tail rotor, a fan exhaust is directed through slots in the tail boom, using the Coanda effect to counteract the torque of the main rotor, and out of a controllable thruster at the end of the tail boom for yaw control


United States Border Patrol
Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department

Specifications (MD 600N)

Data from The International Directiory of Civil Aircraft, 2003-2004 [1]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1-2
  • Capacity: 8 total
  • Length: 35 ft 5 in (11.79 m)
  • Rotor diameter: 27 ft 6 in (8.38 m)
  • Height: 8 ft 9 in (2.65 m)
  • Disc area: 594.0 sq ft (55.2 sq m)
  • Empty weight: 2,100 lbs (952 kg)
  • Max takeoff weight: 4,100 lbs (1,860 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1× One Allison 250-C47 Turboshaft, 600 hp (447 kW)


Popular culture

See Helicopters in popular culture.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Frawley, Gerard: The International Directiory of Civil Aircraft, 2003-2004, page 156. Aerospace Publications Pty Ltd, 2003. ISBN 1-875671-58-7

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