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Ulan-Ude aviation plant to launch production of VRT500 helicopters in 2022

The Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant (U-UAZ, an affiliate of the Russian Helicopters holding company) will launch the production of a new light multirole VRT500 helicopter in 2022, Alexey Mishenin, the deputy head of the government of the Republic of Buryatia for economic development, told TASS.

Ulan Ude aviation plant to launch production of VRT500 helicopters in 2022 VRT 500 mockup (Picture source: Russian Helicopters)

"A package of orders for this helicopter for 2022 has been formed. The production of first VRT500 helicopters is scheduled for 2022," Mishenin said.

Earlier, Alexey Tsydenov, the head of Buryatia, told journalists that the new helicopter had been presented in Abu Dhabi in February 2019 and enlisted the support of the Arab side. The United Arab Emirates are ready to buy the flying craft, Tsydenov said.

"Indeed, it is an export-oriented product meant not only for the internal market. It can also be used for private needs. At present, we have developed a marketing plan to advance the helicopter in the export market. VRT500 was presented within the framework of a demonstration tour in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and other countries," Tsydenov explained.

In May 2018, the Russian Helicopters holding company (an affiliate of the Russian State Corporation Rostec) presented the VRT500 light multirole helicopter to the public for the first time on the sidelines of the HeliRussia-2018 international helicopter show.

The VRT500 helicopter was developed by the VR-Technologii Design Bureau in cooperation with an international team of engineers. The Russian Helicopters’ Head Andrei Boginskiy said in November 2018 that the company was planning to demonstrate a VRT500 flight variant in 2020. Russian Vice-Premier Yuri Borisov said at a meeting held at the U-UAZ plant on February 26 that the VRT500 helicopters were supposed to oust Robinson helicopters of the same class from the Russian market. The designers believe that the market will need about 1,000 VRT500 helicopters in a period till 2035.

VRT500 is a light one-engine helicopter with a co-axial rotor scheme. Its takeoff weight is 1.6 tons. The flying craft has the most spacious cargo-and-passenger cockpit in its class. Its total capacity is up to 5 people. The cockpit is equipped with a modern interactive avionics system. The helicopter’s flight and technical characteristics enable it to develop a speed of up to 250 km/h; fly to distances of up to 860 km and take 730 kg worth of payload onboard.

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