Lockheed Martin is extending the range of its optionally unmanned cargo-hauling version of the Kaman K-1200 K-Max helicopter by adding an auxiliary fuel tank.

"We have recently deployed auxiliary fuel tanks and put them into the aircraft," says Jon McMillen, Lockheed's K-Max business development manager. The auxiliary fuel tanks are mounted internally, he adds.

The extended range K-Max is flying in support of US special operations forces assigned to the US Central Command's area of responsibility in the Middle East, McMillen says. "The deployed team is very happy with it," he adds.

McMillen could not say by how much the helicopter's range had been extended, but even an additional 10nm (19km) to 20nm (37km) could be significant for the K-Max's mission set.

Source: Flight International