One of the world’s largest civilian cargo planes has helped deliver two helicopters to Aberdeen for Babcock Offshore’s North Sea operations.
Last month the UK branch of the company identified two AW139 helicopters which would be of use for its Australian business, and two S-92 helicopters in Melbourne that could serve the North Sea.
To carry out the switch, Babcock employed the services of the Antonov 124 – billed as the largest civilian plane in the world for transporting cargo.
According to operator Volga-Dnepr Airlines, it is capable of carrying 120tonnes across its greatest distances.
The AW139s were transported to Melbourne, where the massive carrier then picked up the S-92s.
These were then taken on a series of flights to Prestwick airport, as the Antonov is too large for Aberdeen airport, and were then taken by road to Babcock’s hangar in Aberdeen.
Ian Cooke, technical director at Babcock Offshore said: “This was a great example of how being part of a global group can bring local benefits.
“When two AW139s became available in Aberdeen it made sense to get them to Australia to serve the oil and gas customers there.
“And then it was also ideal timing to transfer two S-92s, in demand by UK customers, back to Aberdeen to join the Scottish fleet.
“It was a complex project but it went without a hitch and was really smoothly managed by everyone involved.
“The aircraft are now being prepared for operations in their new locations and will bring real benefits to Babcock customers in Scotland and in Australia.”