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High-Tech Helicopter of Agusta: Flying Fortress for the US-President

George Bush has a new toy: His old "Marine One" helicopters are disused, the new flying super bureau is from Europe – the equipment provides anything a president's heart desires.

The new Marine One helicopter of the US-President is from Agusta Westland on basis of EH101
Picture by Agusta-Westland

When George Bush is taking off, he is doing that either with the famous, from numerable Action film well-known president's jet "Airforce One" – a converted Boeing 747 – or with his helicopter Marine One, which in contrary to the Super Jumbo has the advantage of being able to land on the lawn in front of the White House and on every aircraft carrier of the US Navy.

The old American "Sikorsky Sea King"-Helicopter from the 70s is to be disused as a state coach very soon. Now a more modern has to follow, which – according to the US-Airforce – "meets the requirements of the president in a world after the assaults of September 11". Thereby interesting is, that they didn't choose a truebred US product, as they normally would in overly patriotic America. The total of 23 new "Marine One" machines for the president and his staff has a European parent house this time, even if they are produced in USA. Italy's helicopter forge Agusta is signing responsible for the outmost reliable and secure "EH101", which is built in America from Agusta-Westland under the labeling "US101".

The new living room of the US-president on board of the US101: Golden faucets and high-tech communication
Picture by Agusta-Westland

The president's new helicopter is standard equipped with five foldable rotor blades made of super light titan alloy of in each case nearly six meter length and three independent engines, which can be interconnected for a higher capacity, but are capable each of them independently, to hold the machine if there are damages. Each of these aggregates runs about 2520 wave-PS (a specific aviation dimension unit). The US101 has load bearing capacity of scarcely six tons, is 309 km/h fast and is thereby able to leave behind a maximum distance of more than 2000 kilometers. Naturally the president's jet can also to be refueled in the air, and for safety reasons each of the three motors has his own fuel box.

The personally for the president intended "Marine One" should be useable as a flying "Oval Office", respectively equipped with the most modern communication systems besides every imaginable luxury. Secured Internet, Satellite-TV and numerous encoded red telephones for conference calls are standard.

The US arms manufacturer Lockheed-Martin will transform "Marine One" into a nearly unsinkable fortress until the delivery of the first exemplars in 2009. Also in case of an emergency it should be useable for fast evacuations in Washington from up to 30 high-ranking passengers. Although the exact configuration is "top secret" it has been said, the machine will have the newest laser defense system, which is able to recognize attacking rockets and with a targeted shot be able to destroy them during the flight. Furthermore thermal controlled attack missiles can be misled with the help of targeted infrared countermeasures as well as radio-controlled projectiles by means of powerful interfering transmitters. In addition the helicopter can be equipped with surface-to-air missiles as well as machine guns in a short time, without letting open a blind angle and protecting the helicopter on all sides.

Both oval office for the US-President, as well as for evacuations: The EH101 as the Sea King's successor
Picture by Agusta-Westland

Total cost of one of these 23 ordered "Flying Fortresses": Unimaginable 110 million US Dollar. The only downer for the power-adoring Texan George Bush: he will not really be able to fully enjoy the new high-tech-"Toy". His term is definitely to be ended in 2008...

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© A report by Tobias Micke (31-07-05) – Contact