14 September 2000

NHIndustries has been invited for the negotiation phase of the Nordic Standard Helicopter Program.

Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden launched in 1999 a common program to replace its old helicopter fleets for tactical and naval operations with dedicated versions of a basic helicopter in order to share acquisition and in service costs.

NHIndustries is the prime contractor for the NH90 Programme. It represents Agusta, Eurocopter, Eurocopter Deutschland, and Fokker for marketing, international sales, and in service support of NH90 basic helicopter and its derivatives.

The NH90 marked in June 2000 its first big sale success: the signature of the Industrialisation and Production contract for the first batch of 298 helicopters with NAHEMA, representing the four participating nations France, Germany, Italy, and The Netherlands.

This ultimate NH90 quadrinational programme finalisation allows to propose to NSHP a large variety of customised NH90 versions, fully developed, while retaining the maximum level of commonality and role change flexibility, available to fulfil the mission requirements of the Nordic Countries such as Tactical Troop Transport, Search And Rescue, Anti Submarine Warfare, for Ship and Land based operations.

In parallel to the contribution of national industries to the NH90 programme, negotiations with Nordic Countries industries are well progressing in order to arrange a satisfactorily industrial participation consisting mainly in parts production, systems design and integration and a final assembly line setting-up.

Currently the NH90 flight test programme is successfully progressing: the five NH90 prototypes have accumulated more than 850 flight hours, with a total of around 160 flight hours in fly-by-wire mode without any particular discrepancy in relation to the scheduled expectations.

In addition the flight activity is now mainly focused on the qualification of the mission dedicated systems, such as: Electronic Warfare System, comprising Missile Launch Detector, Radar and Laser Warning Receivers, Chaff & Flares Dispenser; FLIR, Helmet Mounted Sight and Display, Weather Radar, and Digital Map Generator (for the TTH version). Electronic Warfare System, 360° Naval Radar, Sonics (Sonar and Sonobuoys), Tactical FLIR, Data Link, and Blade and Tail Automatic Folding System, and Harpoon deck locking system (for the NFH version).

The NH90 with 73 helicopters under negotiation for Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, in addition to 298 helicopters already ordered by France, Germany, Italy, and The Netherlands really represents a big step towards the European Armed Forces co-operation.