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Previously known as the EC145, the Airbus H145 is a twin-engine light helicopter which was co-developed with Kawasaki Heavy Industries in Japan and first flew in 1999. Over 1,500 have been built to date and have been used for a variety of roles including Search and Rescue, police and corporate transports. The standard H-145 is also operated by the RAF as the Jupiter HT1 training helicopter and by the US Army as the UH-72 Lakota as a light utility helicopter. A specialised military version known as the H145M has also been developed and is fitted with ballistic protection, machine gun mounts, military standard avionics and it can also use rocket pods mounted on side pylons.
The RAF operate three Jupiter HT1 as an advanced rotary wing training helicopter and is flown as part of No.1 Flying Training School by 202 Squadron at RAF Valley. The type is used to provide maritime, mountain and SAR training. The Helicopters are provided under lease by Airbus via Ascent as part of the UK Military Flying Training System (MFTS), a 25-year PFI provided by Lockheed Martin and Babcock.
202 Squadron will be providing a single Jupiter HT1s for static display at this year's Air Tattoo. It is planned for the helicopter to be parked together with an example of each type that form the MFTS.
Photo Credit: Glenn Stanley