UK Airborne Anti-Pollution Assets
The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency issued this video in 2011 on their anti-pollution airborne dispersant spraying and surveillance assets.
The video describes their two sesnor equipped surveillance aircraft. It goes onto show their airborne dispersant spray capability being demonstrated in Lyme Bay, using both a small Cessna Caravan II and a Lockheed Electra, doing runs at 300ft and then 50ft.
The MCA’s fixed wing contract is held by RVL Group. The elderly Electras were withdrawn in 2013.
UK company Oil Spill Response Limited (OSRL) provide a global aviation aerial dispersant service.
UPDATE 26 April 2016: OSRL has commissioned its first UK based 727 dispersant aircraft with a TERSUS dispersant system.
UPDATE 12 July 2016: OSRL’s first 727, G-OSRA, operated by 2Excel, was displayed at Farnborough International Airshow in July 2016. It has since been joined by G-OSRB.
UPDATE 14 September 2016: Both OSRL 727s were in action for an exercise off the Isle of Wight today.
In 2014, EASA ruled that for an aircraft spraying system, oil spill dispersant liquids are to be classified as ‘flammable fluids’. The FAA soon aligned with EASA, and as a result any system entering service now has to meet the stringent regulation set out by these agencies. TERSUS, the system on the B727, was designed and built from scratch by 2Excel’s EASA Part21J & G design and production organization Leading Edge. Awarded an EASA STC in 2016, TERSUS is the only aerial dispersant system in the world that complies with the new EASA and FAA regulations.
Spraying is done at 150ft.
UPDATE 17 August 2020: OSRL and 2Excel sign a contract with the MCA.
UPDATE 18 August 2020: 2Excel have modified the 727s to enable flight in known icing conditions with spray booms fitted.
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