Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) is Turkey’s center of technology for the design and development of aerospace systems. A star of the TAI line-up is the dual-engine T129 ATAK helicopter which was developed jointly with AgustaWestland as part of the Turkish Attack and Reconnaissance Helicopter program.
Agile, responsive and strategically deployable, the T129 ATAK needs to have the versatility required to support a number of missions. The helicopter also needs to have a 24-hour a day global operational capability, all-environment operations with a low logistics footprint, mission effectiveness with high reliability, availability and maintainability.
Each T129 ATAK is powered by two CTS800-4A turboshaft engines, a product of the Light Helicopter Turbine Engine Company (LHTEC), a successful 50/50 partnership dating back to 1984 between Honeywell International and Rolls-Royce plc.
The prototype T129 ATAK first flew in September 2009 and, with CTS800 engines, has successfully completed ‘hot and high’ performance tests up to 15,000 feet.
“The T129 ATAK had to be optimized to equal and exceed the ‘hot and high’ performance required for harsh geographical and environmental conditions,” said TAI’s director of helicopter programs, Sunar Oktay. “This required an engine like the LHTEC CTS800 turboshaft which is a class-leading, high-technology engine.”
TAI expects to deliver a total of 91 T129 ATAK helicopters to the Turkish Land Forces – 59 of which are on firm order and 32 are optional orders.