Leonardo delivers HH-139B helicopter to Italian Air Force

Delivery ceremony of a HH-139B helicopter to the Italian Air Force ©Leonardo

The Italian Minister of Defence Lorenzo Guerini and Italian Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Alberto Rosso have attended the acceptance ceremony of an Italian Air Force HH-139B helicopter during an official visit to Leonardo’s helicopter facility in Vergiate (Italy). The HH-139B is a dedicated Air Force variant of the AW139 type. The aircraft will be used for a wide range of missions including SAR – search and rescue, firefighting, and slow mover interceptor. Over 1,200 AW139s have been sold to more than 280 customers in over 70 countries, including more than 80 for Italian government operators (Air Force, Guardia Read more

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U.S. Army special-missions-equipped Beechcraft King Air 300 surpasses 50,000 flight hours

Beechraft King Air 300 ©Textron Aviation

Textron Aviation has announced that a Beechcraft King Air 300, delivered in 1987 and in service in the U.S. Army fleet of aircraft since 2009, has surpassed a significant 50,000 flight hours milestone. The milestone King Air 300 is one of a larger fleet of Medium Altitude Reconnaissance and Surveillance System (MARSS) aircraft. MARSS aircraft are quick-reaction-capability assets supporting the U.S. Army’s requirement for aerial intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. MARSS delivers imagery and signals intelligence data directly to the warfighter. Nearly 7,600 Beechcraft King Air turboprops have been delivered to customers around the world since 1964, making it the best-selling Read more

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Boeing to boost U.K. Royal Air Force Chinook fleet

The Chinook Block II helicopter ©Boeing

U.S. Special Operations Command has awarded Boeing a US$578 million Foreign Military Sales contract approved by the U.S. Department of State to deliver 14 extended-range Chinook helicopters to the U.K. Royal Air Force (RAF). The extended-range Chinook gives the RAF fleet more versatility to execute the domestic and international heavy-lift missions that only the Chinook can facilitate. “These Chinooks are the future of heavy-lift, built on an existing foundation of advanced capability and life-cycle affordability,” said Andy Builta, Boeing Vice President and H-47 program manager. “This contract for Block II aircraft sets the stage for the next 60 years of Read more

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Boeing, ESG and Lufthansa Technik partner for potential German P-8A Poseidon fleet support

Poseidon P-8A ©Boeing

Boeing has signed agreements with ESG Elektroniksystem- und Logistik-GmbH and Lufthansa Technik that outline joint efforts to explore potential areas of collaboration in systems integration, training, support and sustainment work. The signed memorandum of understanding may lead to more definitive agreements should Germany select the P-8A Poseidon as its next maritime surveillance aircraft. Boeing, ESG and Lufthansa Technik have identified opportunities to collaborate in a number of areas and will explore these in more detail, including training and simulation, cyber security, systems integration, certification, environmental compliance, communications systems, electronic attack and electronic protect systems, aircraft and engine sustainment, component support Read more

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U.S. Navy receives first TH-73A training helicopter

Leonardo has delivered the first TH-73A training helicopter to the U.S. Navy, during a ceremony held at its Philadelphia, U.S.A. campus. The TH-73A is based on the Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) variant of the commercial AW119Kx, certified as the only single-engine helicopter in decades to meet current IFR requirements, allowing pilots to operate the aircraft safely in low visibility and challenging weather conditions, thanks to advanced avionics by Genesys Aerosystems and redundant helicopter flight systems. The TH-73A is extremely flexible and can satisfy every training flight requirement, featuring an adjustable observer seat that provides a complete view of the cockpit, Read more

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IAI Signs a US$200 million UAS services contract with country in Asia

Heron unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) ©IAI

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has signed a US$200 million contract to provide unmanned aerial systems (UAS) services to a country in Asia, relating to IAI’s Heron unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). This is the fourth major UAS transaction that IAI has announced this year. The Heron family leads IAI’s range of UAVs. The various Heron models are used regularly for operational missions by over 20 customers worldwide. Controlled remotely from sea frigates or the seashore, the Heron supports ground and maritime missions against submarines and coastal guards. It transmits information while at sea, including between all the weapon systems participating in Read more

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French Navy orders two more H160 helicopters

Two more H160s for the French Navy ©Airbus

The French Armament General Directorate (DGA) has confirmed an option to Airbus Helicopters, Babcock and Safran Helicopter Engines for two more H160s for the French Navy. These aircraft will join the fleet of four H160s already contracted in 2020, the first of which is currently being assembled by Airbus Helicopters in Marignane, in the south of France. The six H160s will be delivered in a Ssearch and rescue (SAR) configuration and will gradually start operating from May 2022 from Lanveoc-Poulmic naval air station (Britany), Cherbourg airport (Normandy), and Hyères naval air station (Provence). Awaiting the H160M “Guépard” deliveries in the Read more

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France, Germany, and Spain reach accord over €100 billion next-gen fighter jet

In what is Europe’s largest defense project expenditure France, Germany, and Spain have reached an agreement over the next generation of fighter jets including unmanned drones – the Future Combat Air System (FCAS) – with an expected expenditure of around €100 billion (US$122 billion.) The new aircraft will begin to phase out the existing German and Spanish Eurofighter, and the French Rafale, from 2040. France in particular was keen to point out that this project was crucial for Europe to strengthen its defense autonomy and face competition from China, Russia and the United States. French Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly Read more

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First Boeing-Saab T-7A Red Hawk advanced trainer joined with its aft section

Boeing T-7A Red Hawk aircraft mechanic examines the surface of the first spliced advanced trainer being produced in St. Louis ©Boeing

The front fuselage of the first Boeing-Saab T-7A Red Hawk advanced trainer was joined perfectly with its aft section in less than 30 minutes — a testament to the digital heritage of the U.S. Air Force’s first “eSeries” aircraft and witness to the benefits of model-based engineering and 3-D design. The digital splice was completed in 95% less time than traditional splices and with substantial quality improvements. The aft fuselage was designed and built by Saab in Linköping, Sweden, under a joint development agreement with Boeing. After making the journey of more than 4,500 miles (7,200 km) to St. Louis, Read more

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MTU Aero Engines and Safran Aircraft Engines create EUMET to lead engine activities of the Next-Generation Fighter (NGF)

The Next-Generation Fighter ©MTU

Europe’s Next-Generation Fighter (NGF) within the FCAS program has taken a decisive step forward as MTU Aero Engines and Safran Aircraft Engines have finalized their collaboration agreement by creating a 50/50 joint company. The new entity, called EUMET GmbH (derived from European Military Engine Team), will be based in Munich and will be headed by a Safran-nominated Chief Executive Officer. EUMET will oversee the development, production and support of the engine to power the NGF. The joint venture will be the sole contract partner for the participating nations in the engine program. On this basis, MTU Aero Engines and Safran Read more

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