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First CH-148 Cyclone Helicopter Fully Manned by RCAF Crew Lands on HMCS Halifax Frigate
 
Just off the coast of Nova Scotia recently, the sun shone on a milestone achievement for the Royal Canadian Air Force’s CH-148 Cyclone helicopter project. The first Cyclone helicopter, fully manned by Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) personnel, successfully landed on a Canadian warship at sea on January 27, 2016. Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Halifax, the ship on which the first Cyclone landing occurred, has been involved with CH-148 testing and training for the past year.
Just off the coast of Nova Scotia recently, the sun shone on a milestone achievement for the Royal Canadian Air Force’s CH-148 Cyclone helicopter project. The first Cyclone helicopter, fully manned by Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) personnel, successfully landed on a Canadian warship at sea on January 27, 2016. Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Halifax, the ship on which the first Cyclone landing occurred, has been involved with CH-148 testing and training for the past year.
 
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Naval Forces News - Canada
 
 
 
First CH-148 Cyclone Helicopter Fully Manned by RCAF Crew Lands on HMCS Halifax Frigate
 
By Sub-Lieutenant Patrick McCarthy, HMCS Halifax
Just off the coast of Nova Scotia recently, the sun shone on a milestone achievement for the Royal Canadian Air Force’s CH-148 Cyclone helicopter project. The first Cyclone helicopter, fully manned by Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) personnel, successfully landed on a Canadian warship at sea on January 27, 2016. Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Halifax, the ship on which the first Cyclone landing occurred, has been involved with CH-148 testing and training for the past year.
     
A CH-148 Cyclone helicopter practices landing procedures on Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Halifax off the coast of Nova Scotia on January 27, 2016
A CH-148 Cyclone helicopter practices landing procedures on Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Halifax off the coast of Nova Scotia on January 27, 2016. PHOTO: Ordinary Seaman Raymond Kwan, RCN
     
HMCS Halifax began “ship helo operating limits” (SHOL) trials in January 2015 and spent five months working with the Cyclone helicopter conducting tests and trials in order to determine operating limits and best practices for the new helicopter. Recommencing SHOL trials in January 2016, the crew of Halifax were happy to a part of this milestone flight for the RCAF.

“This milestone achievement represents a great step forward towards full integration of the Cyclone helicopter into [Royal Canadian Navy] operations,” said Commander Graham Roberts, the commanding officer of HMCS Halifax. “Halifax has been extremely impressed with the capabilities of the Cyclone over the past year and we look forward to continuing to work with helicopter at sea in the coming months.”

Aircrew and ship’s crew shared similar sentiments. Captain Thomas Munro of 423 Maritime Helicopter Squadron, located at 12 Wing Shearwater, Nova Scotia, was the landing signals officer for the first landing. He said he was excited to be a part of the ongoing integration of the Cyclone helicopter and noted: “This week was an excellent opportunity for pilot force generation and an important milestone in the maritime helicopter project.”

Personnel at the Helicopter Operational Test and Evaluation Facility (HOTEF) at 12 Wing have been working very hard to ensure milestones such as this one are achieved.

“The CH-148 Cyclone landing on HMCS Halifax is a tangible representation of the hard work and foundational effort the Helicopter Operational Test and Evaluation has invested since acceptance of the aircraft. The HOTEF continues to lead the introduction of the CH-148 weapon system by proving the operational capabilities of the aircraft and its in-service support structure,” said Major Travis Chapman, the HOTEF’s commanding officer.

HMCS Halifax will continue to operate with the Cyclone helicopter fleet for the remainder of the winter, conducting SHOL trials and furthering the ongoing integration of the Cyclone helicopter into naval operations.