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AgustaWestland AW101 Merlin

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A Royal Navy AW101 Merlin at the 2009 Southport Airshow.
The AgustaWestland AW101 is a medium-lift helicopter used in both military and civil applications. It was developed by joint venture between Westland Helicopters in the UK and Agusta in Italy in response to national requirements for a modern naval utility helicopter; until 2007, the aircraft had been marketed under the designation EH101. Several operators, including the armed forces of Britain, Denmark and Portugal, use the name Merlin for their AW101 aircraft. It is manufactured at factories in Yeovil, England and Vergiate, Italy; licensed assembly work has also taken place in Canada, Japan and the United States.

In 2000, Westland Helicopters and Agusta merged to form AgustaWestland, leading to the type's redesignation as AW101. The AW101 first flew in 1987, and entered into service in 1999. Since the AW101's introduction it has replaced several older helicopter types such as the Sikorsky S-61, performing roles such as medium-sized transport, anti-submarine warfare, and ship-based utility operations.

The Canadian Forces Air Command (CFAIRCOM) and Canadian Forces Maritime Command (CFMARCOM) operates a variant of the AW101, designated CH-149 Cormorant, in the air-sea rescue role. Another variant, designated Lockheed Martin VH-71 Kestrel, was developed to serve in the US presidential transport fleet.


  • Algeria
    • Algerian Air Force
    • Algerian Navy
  • Azerbaijan
    • Azerbaijani Air and Air Defence Force
  • Canada - see AgustaWestland CH-149 Cormorant
    • Royal Canadian Air Force
    • Royal Canadian Navy
  • Denmark
    • Royal Danish Air Force
  • Indonesia
    • Indonesian Air Force
  • Italy
    • Aeronautica Militare
    • Marina Militare
  • Japan
    • Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force
    • Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department
  • Nigeria
    • Nigerian Air Force
  • Norway
    • Royal Norwegian Air Force
  • Portugal
    • Portuguese Air Force
  • Saudi Arabia
    • Royal Saudi Air Force
  • Turkmenistan
    • Turkemistan Air Force
  • United Kingdom
    • Royal Air Force
    • Royal Navy
  • United States

See Also[edit]

Related Development[edit]

Comparable Aircraft[edit]

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