Westland Sea King, HRH Prince William Training Flight SAR, 2011, 22 Sqn SPECIAL EDITION. Assigned to 22 Squadron on 15th April 2010, HRH Prince William had already undertaken service in both the Navy and the Army. Flying as a co-pilot, Prince William assists the search and rescue operations of the squadron. He has already undertaken a number of rescue missions and has proven to be a capable and dependable asset to the squadron. He flies in a number of Sea Kings, including this one and completed his first rescue mission in October 2010, participating in a rescue of a man from an oil rig who suffered an apparent heart attack. The Sea King is a dependable and valuable asset to the United Kingdom’s Air Sea Rescue fleet. They not only rescue injured or stranded sailors, but also work in the mountainous regions of Wales, helping injured and lost climbers and hikers to safety. The squadrons base at RAF Valley were also heavily involved with the rescue of over 100 people from the Boscastle floods of 2004. Scale: 1:72 Rotor span: 260mm
The Westland WS-61 Sea King is a British licence-built version of the American Sikorsky S-61 helicopter of the same name, built by Westland Helicopters. The aircraft differs considerably from the American version, with Rolls-Royce Gnome engines (licence-built General Electric T58s), British-made anti-submarine warfare systems and a fully computerised flight control system. The Sea King was primarily designed for performing anti-submarine warfare (ASW) missions. A Sea King variant was adapted by Westland as troop transport known as the Commando.
In British service, the Westland Sea King provided a wide range of services in both the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy. As well as wartime roles in the Falklands War, the Gulf War, the Balkans conflict, the Iraq War, and the Afghanistan War, the Sea King is perhaps most well known in its capacity as a RAF Search and Rescue Force helicopter. The Sea King was also adapted to meet the Royal Navy’s requirement for a ship-based airborne early warning platform.
As of 2012, the WS-61 Sea King remains in operation in Britain, as well as multiple export customers: Germany, Norway, Egypt and India. Some operators have replaced, or are planning to replace, the Sea King with more modern helicopters, such as the NHIndustries NH90 and the AgustaWestland AW101 Merlin.