Products > UH-72A Lakota Overview
The U.S. Army has successfully introduced the UH-72A Lakota light utility helicopter into its rotary-wing inventory for homeland security operations, medical evacuation, passenger/logistics transportation and drug interdiction missions.
Following its competitive selection in mid-2006, deliveries of the UH-72A commenced in December of the same year, three months ahead of schedule. U.S. Army program requirements total up to 345 UH-72As, with a potential life-cycle value of over $2 billion.
The Lakota is a version of the technologically-advanced and operationally-proven EC145 multi-mission helicopter, which is used worldwide for law enforcement, emergency medical transportation, search and rescue, offshore and utility operations, and corporate transportation.
Incorporation of proven and new COTS technologies, combined with the UH-72A's operational capabilities, result in an aircraft that is exceptionally easy and affordable to operate and maintain. Extensive use of new, lightweight manufacturing materials and extensive system modularity simplifies maintenance, reducing lifetime ownership costs and logistics requirements
U.S. Army pilots benefit from the UH-72A’s VEMD (Vehicle and Engine Multifunction Display) and its night vision goggle (NVG) compatible glass cockpit, which synthesizes flight and vehicle information, increasing situational awareness and reducing crew workload.
The Lakota's redundant hydraulic, electrical, and engine control systems – combined with its crashworthy airframe and energy-attenuating pilot and passenger seats – add a high level of flight safety and survivability to the type’s exceptional flight characteristics. Power from the aircraft’s reliable Arriel turboshafts is delivered through a proven hingeless rotor system to the UH-72A’s advanced technology composite rotor blades. Coupled with advanced blade design, this decreases vibration and noise, while enhancing aerodynamic efficiency and mission performance.
The UH-72A's unobstructed main cabin is easily re-configurable to maximize mission flexibility. The helicopter's sliding side and rear clamshell doors optimize access and effective space utilization, offering rapid troop deployment and substantial mission growth potential. The Lakota can carry up to nine troops on crashworthy seats, while two stretchers can be installed for MEDEVAC missions.
Deliveries of UH-72A Lakotas take place from a new assembly and production facility at Airbus Helicopters, Inc.’s Columbus, Mississippi plant, securing long-term jobs for hundreds of American workers. This 317,000-sq.-ft. facility incorporates an assembly hall, flight line, paint shop, warehouse, administrative offices, flight operations and flight test engineering.