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Russia's Mi-8 Helicopter Ready for Arctic Duty

© Sputnik / Vladimir Baranov / Go to the photo bankA Mil Mi-8 helicopter
A Mil Mi-8 helicopter - Sputnik International
A modified version of the Mil Mi-8 transport helicopter, designed for Russia's Ministry of Defense, has been prepared to venture into the Arctic and operate in up to -50 degrees Celsius.

The Russian Helicopters design and manufacturing company "is working on the new Mi-8AMTSh-VA helicopter designed to be used in the Arctic and the Extreme North. The development stage is over and the rotorcraft is expected to undergo testing in the second half of 2015," company's CEO Alexander Mikheev said during the MAKS-2015 air show.

The helicopter is based on the latest modification of the Mi-8AMTSh-V military transport helicopter which is fitted with the new Klimov-made VK-2500-03 turboshaft engines, a more powerful TA-14 auxiliary power unit and an upgraded avionics suite.

"Thanks to new avionics the helicopter will be able to fly in any weather conditions, day and night. The rotorcraft will remain operational even if it loses satellite signal. The Mi-8AMTSh-VA was created for the Ministry of Defense to be used by forces deployed to the Arctic," Mikheev added.

It was reported earlier that the modified Mi-8 also featured an auxiliary electric generator, an ice-protection system and ski landing gear for landing on soft snow and swamps.

Training of cadets in the Arctic division DVVKU - Sputnik International
Russia to Hold First Arctic Drills on Strategic Facilities Defense in 2015
The helicopter will be produced at the Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant.

The Mi-8AMTSh-V is an upgraded version of the Mi-8AMTSh assault helicopter, also known as the Terminator. It was designed to transport troops and cargo, as well as provide firepower support. It is also capable of carrying out search and rescue operations.

The Mi-8AMTSh "can engage enemy infantry, armored vehicles and even main battle tanks. Also it has secondary air-to-air capability against low-flying aircraft, helicopters, and UAVs," the Military Today website observed.

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