MD 540F Aircraft Successfully Completes First Phase Of Weapons Platform Testing Aircraft Displays Exceptional Performance and Target Accuracy During Successful Live Firing Exercises

MESA, Ariz., March 6, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- MD Helicopters Inc. (MDHI), a Lynn Tilton company and leading manufacturer of commercial, air-rescue, military and law enforcement helicopters, announced that the MD 540F aircraft has successfully completed the first phase of live fire exercises. The firing exercise is one milestone in a development plan to complete overall validation and eventual FAA certification of the new aircraft.

(Logo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130306/DE72153LOGO )

During the week of Feb. 25, the MD 540F was put to the test at the U.S. Army Yuma Proving Grounds to commence qualification of its weapons platform. The 540F is engineered to support an advanced, lightweight weapons platform with four stations. Various mixes of guns, rockets and missiles can be carried simultaneously. The aircraft successfully completed the first phase of live fire exercises, including fifteen engagements with M3P .50-Caliber guns. Additional validation testing was completed on the L3 Wescam MX-10D sensor and the Mace Aviation weapons platform. The aircraft responded extremely well and demonstrated exceptional performance during hover, diving and running fire engagements. Subsequent weapons platform testing will be conducted later this year to confirm MD 540F performance and precision strike capabilities with laser-guided rockets and Hellfire missiles.

"We are extremely pleased with the results of the live firing exercise and overall in-flight performance of the 540F aircraft," said Ms. Lynn Tilton, CEO of MDHI. "Our steadfast aim is to deliver a robust light attack helicopter with the lethal strike power, stability and accuracy only available in much larger and more costly aircraft. As we have demonstrated to the U.S. Army on multiple occasions and past programs, the 540F development program will remain on schedule and deliver exceptional performance on all fronts."

In September 2012 the 540F completed its voluntary flight demonstration for Armed Aerial Scout with the U.S. Army. The 540F is an upgrade to the popular MD 530F; boasting a 6-bladed, fully articulated rotor blade system made up entirely of composite material, in addition to a more rugged landing skid built for heavier take-off and landing weights. MDHI engineers have bolstered performance to achieve a dramatic increase in max gross take-off weight and useful load capability. This increase will allow the MD 540F to carry a full avionics and weapons package while hovering at 6,000 feet/95 degrees F.

Visit MD Helicopters in booth N4121 at the 2013 HELI-EXPO, to meet with product specialists and to witness the armed version of the MD 540F.

About MD Helicopters
MD Helicopters, Inc. (MDHI), a Lynn Tilton company, is a leading manufacturer of commercial, military, law enforcement and air-rescue helicopters.  The MDHI family of rotorcraft is world renowned for its value, versatility and performance.  The MD Helicopters family includes the twin-engine MD Explorer, and single engine versions of the MD 600N, MD 520N, MD 500E, MD 530F and MD 540F. The innovative NOTAR system for anti-torque control with no tail rotor is used exclusively by MD Helicopters to provide safer, quieter and confined-area access capability.  The company is based in Mesa, Arizona. For more information about MDHI, visit www.mdhelicopters.com.

SOURCE MD Helicopters Inc.



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