Leonardo Helicopters NEWS

Leonardo Helicopters [AgustaWestland/Finmeccanica] NEWS, Press Releases, Images … and not only

PRESS RELEASE – 7 February 2018

Leonardo expands its presence in Bangladesh helicopter market.

  • Three AW109 Trekker and two AW119Kx helicopters to be delivered in 2018 to Bashundhara Airways.
  • Leonardo’s footprint in the market expanding to over 30% of turbine helicopters.
  • Bashundhara Airways also to become exclusive distributor and a Service Centre for
    Leonardo civil helicopters in Bangladesh.

Singapore, 07 February 2018 – Leonardo is expanding its share of the growing Bangladeshi helicopter market with the announcement, during Singapore Air Show, of the upcoming delivery of five helicopters to Bashundhara Airways, comprising three AW109 Trekkers and two AW119Kx. The helicopters will be used for EMS, utility, law-enforcement, surveillance, VIP, corporate & passenger transport applications and are all scheduled to be delivered before the end of 2018 bringing Leonardo’s market share to exceed a 30%. Furthermore, Bashundhara Airways has been appointed exclusive distributor of Leonardo civil helicopters in Bangladesh and will establish a Service Centre for the Country, thus beginning a fruitful collaboration. The appointment marks another step in Leonardo’s ongoing expansion of its customer support network around the world, establishing centers close to customers to provide quicker and better services.

Leonardo already has an established presence in Bangladesh with government customers operating helicopters – including twin-engine AW139s with the Bangladesh Air Force and AW109Mss with the Navy – and other defence and security systems. Bashundhara Airways is part of Bashundhara Group, one of the largest conglomerates of Bangladesh. Leaded by the dynamic leadership of Managing Director Mr. Safwan Sobhan, the company, debuted in late 2016 great vision to be one of the remarkable & extraordinary air service providers of south-east Asia, being the most cost-effective & upholding uncompromised safety, unmatched quality & unbroken commitments. Bashundhara Airways is working with the Bangaldesh government to establish the first & only private heliport in the heart of Dhaka. The AW119Kx is a best in class single engine helicopter featuring a ‘state-of-the-art’ avionics system for enhanced situational awareness, mission effectiveness and safety. Nearly 300 AW119 helicopters have been ordered to date in almost 40 countries by over 120 customers. The AW109 Trekker is the latest addition to Leonardo’s helicopter portfolio and the company’s first light twin to offer skid landing gear. Featuring modern modular avionics it can be easily configured for a wide range of roles and is the ideal solution for EMS, utility, SAR, law enforcement, surveillance and passenger transport applications. Orders for over 40 AW109 Trekkers have been logged so far by customers in Europe, North America and Asia to perform roles like emergency medical service, law enforcement and utility missions.

PRESS RELEASE – 7 February 2018

Leonardo cresce in Indonesia con nuovi ordini e consegne nel settore degli elicotteri.

  • Ordinati due AW169 destinati al trasporto aziendale.
  • Leonardo amplierà ulteriormente la presenza nel Paese grazie alle prossime consegne di elicotteri per missioni offshore, antincendio e di elisoccorso.
  • La flotta di elicotteri di Leonardo in Indonesia è raddoppiata negli ultimi 3 anni.

Singapore, 7 febbraio 2018 – L’Indonesia si conferma un mercato in forte crescita per Leonardo grazie ad un nuovo ordine nel Paese per due elicotteri intermedi leggeri AW169 destinati al trasporto aziendale.

Gli elicotteri, i primi di questo modello ordinati in Indonesia, saranno consegnati entro la fine del 2018. Con le imminenti consegne di un ulteriore AW139, che sarà gestito dalla compagnia aerea Travira per operazioni offshore, e di due AW119Kx per attività antincendio e di elisoccorso all’operatore NUH, Leonardo espande ulteriormente la sua presenza in ambito elicotteristico nel Paese con una crescita della flotta del 100% negli ultimi 3 anni.

I nuovi ordini e le consegne si aggiungono a vari modelli impiegati per numerosi ruoli, confermando la flessibilità della gamma di prodotti di Leonardo nel settore. Tra questi, l’elicottero intermedio AW139, gestito dall’agenzia governativa BASARNAS per missioni di ricerca e soccorso, altri AW139 per attività offshore e un mix di elicotteri monomotore e bimotore leggeri impiegati per il trasporto di passeggeri. Leonardo è, inoltre, presente nel Paese nell’ambito di diversi programmi governativi e militari, nei sistemi di difesa forniti alla Marina indonesiana e nel settore dell’osservazione satellitare.

PRESS RELEASE – 6 February 2018.

ABC chooses AW169 for electronic newsgathering in Japan.

Leonardo and Mitsui Bussan Aerospace, the official distributor in Japan for the AW169 and AW139 helicopter models, announced on Feb. 6 the signing of a contract with Asahi Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) for one AW169 light intermediate helicopter. The helicopter with special configuration will enter service in 2021 adding to one AW169 sold to Asahi Shimbun newspaper.

The aircraft, replacing an older model, will be used to perform electronic newsgathering (ENG) operations, with entry into service expected in 2021 following local mission equipment installation and customization. The aircraft will feature an ultra-HD gyrostabilized camera, microwave downlink for live broadcasting and a comprehensive TV mission console. The order marks the fourth AW169 sale in Japan, the second for ENG tasks following contract from Asahi Shimbun newspaper testifying customer’s satisfaction with the type. The AW169 is perfectly suited to perform electronic newsgathering operations thanks to high performance, cabin space, latest safety standards and versatility. Leonardo has experienced a growing presence in the Japanese ENG market in recent years with the contracts for 10 aircraft including seven AW139s (NHK, Kansai TV, Nippon TV, Chukyo TV), two AW169s and one GrandNew (Asahi Shimbun and ABC).

Nearly 120 Leonardo helicopters of various models are in service in Japan today, performing a range of missions including EMS, SAR, law enforcement, firefighting, disaster relief, VIP/corporate transport, electronic newsgathering and naval operations. A versatile, new-generation, twin-engine light intermediate category helicopter, the 4.6/4.8 tonne AW169 has been designed in response to the growing market demand for an aircraft that delivers high performance, meets all the latest safety standards and has multi-role capabilities. Orders for more than 170 AW169 helicopters have been signed by over 70 customers in nearly 30 countries around the world to date for a wide range of applications including air ambulance, law enforcement, executive/corporate transport and electronic newsgathering. Almost 50 units have already been delivered globally.

PRESS RELEASE – 06 February 2018.

Leonardo signs for first ‘excellent’ service center in Japan.

Leonardo and Shizuoka Air Commuter Corporation (SACC) of Japan announced the signing of a Service Center Agreement to set up helicopter maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) capabilities in Mt. Fuji Shizuoka Airport. The agreement foresees the construction and completion of a new dedicated hangar in 2018, with operational readiness by spring 2019. The MRO center will support the successful AW109 series and AW139 aircraft models with an annual capacity of up to 24 units and potential to grow its capacity based on market demand.

SACC’s MRO center will be the first service center in Japan ranked ‘excellent’ under Leonardo’s guidelines, expanding a local support network that already accounts for four service centers. ‘Excellent’ ranking is assigned to selected service centers focused on maintaining third party fleets and having the largest scope of service capabilities, all while guaranteeing the continued achievement of Leonardo’s customers stringent expectations and considering specific market requirements. With over 100 helicopter service and maintenance centers worldwide to date, Leonardo plans to establish at least one ‘excellent’ center in all strategic markets. This step reflects a strong commitment to position the customer at the core of any activity undertaken by Leonardo, from design through to life cycle support.

Leonardo’s regional business headquarters, based in Tokyo, has been supporting the company’s growing helicopter business in Japan since 2008. Over 120 helicopters of various models are in service in the country today performing a wide range of missions including emergency medical service, law enforcement, search-and-rescue, firefighting, disaster relief, VIP/corporate transport, electronic news gathering and naval utility. With nearly 25 years of maintenance services supplied through a growing support network nationwide, Leonardo is set to strengthen the level of service in the future. The Japanese turbine helicopter market shows significant potential in the next few decades to replace ageing fleets with modern technology and up to 30 new units could enter the market every year.

Established in 1991, the SACC, based in Shizuoka Prefecture where Mt. Fuji is located, has been providing operations and maintenance of helicopters and business jets for 25 years, maintaining a record of accident-free operations. SACC is also an operator of two GrandNew helicopters assembled by Leonardo and has supported the Dr. Heli national emergency medical service program since 2015.

PRESS RELEASE – 17 January 2018

Falcon Aviation and Leonardo partner for new helicopter offshore and onshore contract for Kuwait Oil Company.

Falcon Aviation, one of the UAE’s leading aviation companies specializing in business aviation services, charter and aircraft management, confirmed on Jan. 17 at the Kuwait Aviation Show that three new Leonardo AW169 helicopters (signed for at the recent Dubai Airshow) will be deployed on a five-year contract with The Kuwait Oil Company (KOC). The helicopters will perform onshore and offshore oil-and-gas operations. This debut in Kuwait marks a significant expansion for Falcon Aviation, which will be adding additional personnel in Kuwait, including offshore pilots and supportive administration personnel, plus line and base engineers to start the contract. The first two AW169s will arrive in March and April 2018. 

“We congratulate Falcon Aviation Services on this major achievement and are proud to contribute with additional AW169s to meet the operational requirement,” said Emilio Dalmasso, senior vice president of commercial business unit, Leonardo Helicopters. “The new contract builds on our successful 10-year partnership including Falcon’s commitment as launch customer of the AW169 in the Middle East. We are convinced the Kuwait Oil Company will significantly benefit from the capabilities, versatility and safety of this new generation helicopter, along with the great service and operational expertise of Falcon Aviation.”

“This is a significant strategic contract for us, it was a strong international competition and fortunately we won the contract, which takes us into Kuwait for the first time,” said Falcon Aviation COO Captain Raman Oberoi. “We see a unique opportunity to provide safe and reliable services to KOC. We will work together to build a sustainable oil-and-gas aviation support services increase efficiency and productivity.”

MRO expansion into Kuwait

Falcon Aviation will establish all the required infrastructure, including the building of a brand new hangar to house the three Leonardo AW169s and create facilities to carry out line and base maintenance on the type.

“The KOC contract specified two helicopters, but Falcon Aviation added a third helicopter as backup to provide continuous services,” noted Nicolas Tejera, director of maintenance, who is expanding Falcon Aviation’s rotary MRO team by recruiting helicopter engineers for the project. “It is an honor to win this contract and we are excited to be entering into this new project in the new territory of Kuwait with Leonardo. We know and understand the aircraft well and have enjoyed excellent customer satisfaction with the AW169 since introducing the type with TOTAL in ABK Field, UAE in January 2016.”

Falcon Aviation is the lead aircraft operator of the AW169 worldwide and confident of its suitability to provide reliable services to KOC for its offshore and onshore requirements.

The AW169 is a modern, multi mission twin-engine class A performance helicopter, renowned for its superior performance and safety standards and featuring 8/10-seat passenger layout.

Press Release – January 16, 2018.

First EMS AW169 launched in the Nordics.

Östersund, Sweden – Babcock Scandinavian AirAmbulance (BSAA) is pleased to announce that it has launched the very first state-of-the-art AW169 helicopter in active Emergency Medical Service (EMS) duty in the Nordics. The helicopter is operated on behalf of Region Jämtland Härjedalen and it replaces the AS365N2 “Dauphin” that the company has operated in the region since 2006.

Shortly after 10:00 on Saturday, January 13, the new helicopter took off on its first mission assignment ever – a long-distance patient transport southwards. Later that afternoon, a very satisfied crew returned to Östersund after more than four hours in the air. “It’s a big and historic event for us and for the region to finally get airborne – in active duty – with the AW169,” says company Production Manager Thure Waplan. “The launch has been preceded by a long period of customization and training to ensure the highest quality and safety right from the start, which means that we are very delighted to start our operations with such a capable helicopter.”

The medical environment is greatly improved in this brand-new helicopter, while providing a host of customized solutions that are optimized for EMS. The list of advantages is long, but the most important ones include enhanced performance and improved safety. The sophisticated cockpit delivers better situational awareness while allowing more advanced flight automation.
The base in Östersund is the first of four Swedish EMS helicopter bases that will replace its existing helicopters with the Leonardo AW169s in 2018. Next in line are, Gällivare, Lycksele and the newly awarded base in Gothenburg. Simultaneously, work is also underway to replace the current helicopters at the company’s base in Stockholm with two new Airbus H145 this spring. “Overall, we are currently embarked on the most extensive upgrade of Sweden’s  EMS helicopter inventory ever”, says Waplan. ” We manage this task with great confidence and respect, and we are also very grateful for the trust we are given.”

About the AW169 – The Leonardo AW169 is a brand-new medium-sized helicopter that flew for the first time in 2012. It is equipped with two powerful Pratt & Whitney engines as well as the latest in avionics and flight safety features. In addition, it has a large and spacious cabin with large windows and a functional EMS interior, as well as a low floor to allow smooth patient transfer. The model is currently used in a wide range of operations worldwide, including EMS and rescue services, oil and gas, wind farm support, offshore pilot transfers, etc.

About BSAA – Babcock Scandinavian AirAmbulance operates the EMS helicopters at six of nine bases in Sweden, as well as three of seven bases in Finland. In Sweden, the company has helicopters in Gällivare, Lycksele, Östersund, Uppsala, Stockholm and Visby, and from June also in Gothenburg. In Finland, the company has helicopters in Rovaniemi, Oulu and Kuopio. In addition, the company has fixed-wing air ambulance aircraft in Luleå, Umeå, Arlanda and Landvetter, as well as offices in Östersund-Frösön, Stockholm-Arlanda and in Luleå. The Swedish airplane fleet is presently undergoing an extensive renewal process. BSAA has recently been< awarded the Norwegian air ambulance contract, which means that the company is currently setting up a Norwegian head office in Tromsø, placing a flight training simulator in Oslo, as well as establishing seven aircraft bases around Norway.

PRESS RELEASE – 2 JANUARY 2018

LATVIA ORDERS ADDITIONAL HELICOPTERS FOR STATE BORDER GUARD.

  • Two AW119Kx helicopters will join two AW109 Powers in 2019 to perform SAR, transport, firefighting and disaster relief missions
  • Contract also includes an option for an additional unit and aircrew/maintenance technician training services
  • Orders for nearly 300 AW119s placed by over 120 customers in almost 40 nations to date​

Leonardo is pleased to announce that the State Border Guard of Latviahas signed a contract for two AW119Kx single engine helicopters plus option for an additional unit, customised configuration and aircrew/maintenance technician training services. The aircraft will be delivered from the Company’s facility in Philadelphia in 2019 and will perform a wide range of missions including search and rescue (SAR), transport, firefighting and disaster relief; replacing two ageing AB206B JetRangers.

This order marks a further expansion of the State Border Guard’s fleet of Leonardo helicopters, adding to two AW109 Power light twins which have been successfully in service for the last ten years. The AW119Kx was chosen following a thorough assessment of competing types within the framework of the Ministry of the Interior’s helicopter fleet modernisation programme. The combination of AW109 Power and AW119Kx helicopters will boost the State Border Guard’s mission capabilities and versatility for round-the-clock day/night operations.

The AW119Kx is a best in class single engine helicopter featuring a state-of-the-art avionics system for enhanced situational awareness, mission effectiveness and safety. The AW119Kx has a large cabin able to accommodate up to six passengers and redundancy of all critical systems that are typically available on twin engine aircraft, ensuring outstanding safety.

Nearly 300 AW119 helicopters have been ordered to date in almost 40 countries by over 120 customers. The new AW119Kx is perfectly suited to perform many roles including law enforcement, EMS, utility, fire-fighting, VIP/Corporate transport, training and government duties. Several law enforcement operators in the USA, China, Republic of Korea, Finland, and Brazil, to name a few, have already chosen the AW119.

PRESS RELEASE – 27 December 2017

AW139 GLOBAL HELICOPTER FLEET SETS OUTSTANDING MILESTONE OF TWO MILLION FLIGHT HOUR.

  • Of the total, one million flight hours were achieved in the last three years, demonstrating impressive reliability, effectiveness, safety and supportability
  • The most successful helicopter programme in 15 years benefits from strong partnership between the Company and its customers, maintaining huge growth potential
  • Best-seller with orders for over 1000 units and nearly 900 aircraft in service to date

The AW139 intermediate twin engine helicopter global fleet has reached an outstanding milestone of two million flight hours, across all operational scenarios on five continents, while performing a wide range of missions with commercial, government and military operators. This accomplishment was reached just three years after the achievement of the first million showing impressive reliability, effectiveness, safety and supportability across a range of missions.

With the AW139 fleet leader having exceeded 12,000 hours on a single aircraft, nearly 900 units are today in service out of over 1000 on order by more than 300 customers in 80 countries worldwide. The global reach of the AW139, assembled in Philadelphia and Vergiate, has resulted in the type becoming a benchmark as the best-selling helicopter in its weight category and the most successful helicopter programme in the last 15 years. The type covers the widest range of applications with high flexibility including SAR, EMS, law enforcement and homeland security, patrol, firefighting, disaster relief, offshore transport, VIP/Corporate transport, utility and military duties.

This latest operational achievement is the combined result of the AW139’s design, quality, performance and market success as well as Company’s capability in supporting the worldwide fleet. The two million flight hour milestone was made possible through the variety of Leonardo services and support packages and the extended support network distributed in geographies around the world.

The AW139 complies with the latest certification and safety standards, offering outstanding overall performance with impressive power margin and one engine inoperative capability and also with a certified 60+ MGB ‘run dry’ capability which provides the highest standard in terms of safety.

Designed to allow high versatility and customized solutions, the AW139 is available with more than 1000 certified equipment options. Among some of the latest innovative systems available for the type are the LIPS and FIPS (Limited and Full Icing Protection Systems, respectively), and the OPLS (Obstacle Proximity Lidar System) that enhance mission capability and safety.

The AW139 has significantly grown its capabilities in years. This includes a maximum take-off weight extension (MTOW) to 7,000 kg for newly built and retrofitted aircraft, and as a result, new Cat A offshore enhanced procedures, avionic suite releases delivering ADSB-Out (automated dependent surveillance-broadcast), TCAS II (Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System), RNP performance (Required Navigation Performance), EGPWS update (Enhanced Ground Proximity System), Wide Area Augmentation System/Localizer Performance with Vertical Guidance, and many other features.

Supportability has also been strengthened. A 30% reduction in maintenance time has been achieved with a dedicated Service Excellence initiative. Leonardo has established a Reliability Data Sharing Group (RDSG) and has launched a Flight Crew Operations Manual (FCOM) as additional services. Since its certification in 2004, approximately 5300 pilots and 7700 technicians have been trained with over 150,000 simulator hours logged to date.

The AW139 helicopter is part of the family of new generation helicopters produced by Leonardo that also includes the AW169 and AW189. These models all possess the same high-performance flight characteristics and safety features whilst sharing the same common cockpit concept and design philosophy. This approach facilitates synergies for operators of these types in areas such as training, maintenance and support. The AW139 design, success and experience have been key to the development of these latest additions to the product range and the family concept itself.

PRESS RELEASE – 27 December 2017

AW109 TREKKER HELICOPTER ACHIEVES EASA CERTIFICATION.

  • Newest type in the light twin-engine segment strengthening Leonardo’s position in this market for public services and utility duties
  • EASA Certification allows deliveries to start in the first quarter of 2018
  • Over 40 aircraft ordered by customers worldwide to date

Leonardo is pleased to announce that the AW109 Trekker helicopter was issued with type certification by the European Aviation Safety Agency(EASA) yesterday. Deliveries will start in the first quarter of 2018. The milestone marks the entry into the market of the newest light twin-engine helicopter designed by Leonardo, further strengthening its leading position in a key market segment, in particular to meet the growing demand for greater capability, versatility and cost effectiveness for public services and utility duties.

The AW109 Trekker, based on the bestselling AW109/Grand range of helicopters, is equipped with skid landing gear and a state-of-the-art Genesys Aerosystems “glass” cockpit. The cockpit display system provides pilots only with the necessary information to help reduce their workload while flying in challenging environments and in demanding weather conditions. The AW109 Trekker retains the same characteristics of high productivity, excellent performance and flying qualities, high maneuverability, robustness, advanced navigation capabilities and high inherent safety of the other light twin helicopters produced by Leonardo. Power is provided by two FADEC equipped Pratt & Whitney Canada PW207C turbine engines.

The spacious cabin, the same size as the Grand/GrandNew, can accommodate up to six passengers or one stretcher with three/four medical attendants or two stretchers and two medical attendants. Capable of single pilot operation, an additional passenger can be carried in the cockpit if required. The AW109 Trekker incorporatesmany safety features including a cocoon-type airframe; crash resistant fuel system, crew and passengers seats, full Cat. A / Class 1 performance in hot environments and a 30 minute ‘run-dry’ main gear box.

The aircraft is designed with a modular configuration approach in order to meet different needs, from single pilot VFR to dual pilot IFR. A wide range of role equipment is available including a cargo hook, external rescue hoist, searchlight, external loudspeakers, FLIR (Forward Looking Infra-Red) camera, video downlink, snow skis and emergency floats as well as a wide range of interior layouts to meet various customers’ operational requirements.Leonardo’s Customer Support & Training Global Network provides AW109 Trekker operators with a range of Service Plans and a state-of-the-art training capability to maximise operational safety and aircraft availability. TheAW109 Trekker can be easily configured for a wide range of roles and is the ideal solution for EMS, SAR, law enforcement, utility, surveillance, passenger transport and government duties. Orders for over 40 AW109 Trekkers have been placed by customers worldwide to date.