Westland Wasp is a British military multi-purpose helicopter developed in 1962 by the Westland Helicopter aircraft manufacturer.
A small multi-purpose helicopter model Westland Wasp began to be developed by British engineers from the aircraft company Westland Helicopters in the late 50s of the last century. The main purpose of this was to order from the British armed forces, who needed a small but at the same time multifunctional aircraft, capable of carrying on board both a small number of people and cargo and used as a patrol vehicle, as a medical helicopter, etc.
The Westland Wasp helicopter was designed based on the model of the Saro P.531 helicopter, which was never able to gain popularity even despite its rather high flight performance.
The Westland Wasp model made its first flight in October 1962, and due to the aircraft showing very acceptable flight performance, mass production of these aircraft began in 1963, which remained in demand in the armed forces of countries such as the United Kingdom, Netherlands, New Zealand and Malaysia, up to the year 2000.
The Westland Wasp helicopter could be positioned as a full-fledged combat aircraft, for which, depending on the purpose and modification, the following weapons could be installed on it:
- Machine gun caliber 7.62 mm.;
- A set of unguided missiles;
- A set of torpedoes, or a deep-sea nuclear charge to fight enemy ships and submarines.
Onboard a helicopter model Westland Wasp can accommodate up to 6 people – 2 crew members and four passengers or military personnel, which primarily depended on the intended purpose of the aircraft. Among other things, the helicopter could also carry out the transportation of various kinds of cargo, with a total weight of up to 970 kilograms, which is why this aircraft was most often used.
The power plant of the Westland Wasp helicopter consists of one Rolls-Royce Nimbus 103 gas turbine aircraft engine, which is capable of developing a thrust of 1050 hp, which is quite a lot for an aircraft of this type. If necessary, the helicopter can cover distances at distances of 490 kilometers, and fly at a maximum speed of 195 km \ h.
Aircraft model Westland Wasp produced by British engineers in the following versions:
- Westland Sea Scout HAS.1 – the basic production version of the helicopter;
- Westland Wasp HAS.1 – anti-ship and anti-submarine version of the helicopter.
For the entire time of release, 133 aircraft of this model were built, of which only a few copies have survived to date, including museum exhibits.
- Crew: 2 people;
- Capacity: 4 people (depending on version);
- Length: 12.3 m.;
- Height: 2.72 m.;
- The diameter of the rotor: 9.83 m.;
- The mass of the empty helicopter: 1569 kg. (Depending on version);
- Maximum take-off weight: 2500 kg .;
- Cruising speed: 175 km \ h.;
- Maximum flight speed: 195 km \ h.;
- Maximum flight range: 490 km .;
- Maximum flight height: 3720 m.;
- Powerplant: Rolls-Royce Nimbus 103;
- Power: 1050 hp