5 European countries join forces to design the next medium multi-role helicopter

European helicopters are, unquestionably, among the best rotary wings in the world, and have been for several decades. Over the course of industrial concentrations and consolidation of activity, two major European groups have emerged in this field, the Franco-German Airbus Hélicoptères and the Italian-British Agusta-Westland. Is it to respond to the emergence of new technologies such as those implemented in the United States as part of the US Army's Future Vertical Lift program? or the upcoming arrival of China and its Z-20 on the international market? anyway, these 4 countries are home to European helicopters, Germany, France, Italy and the United Kingdom, joined in this by…

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Italy wants to participate in US Army FVL program with European help

The Italian authorities have announced that they have included measures to support its defense industry in its plan to use part of the €209 billion allocated by the European Union as part of the post-Covid recovery plan. While Rome's objective is obviously to support innovation and develop new technologies, the stated ambition goes well beyond declarations of principle, and identifies very specific areas, such as participation in the British new fighter program generation Tempest, the development of a new offer of naval engines and, in a way that may seem surprising, the participation in the Futur Vertical Lift program of…

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Indonesia could buy MV-22 Osprey

This Monday, July 6, the US State Department announced that it had approved $7,5 billion in arms sales within the framework of Foreign Military Sales (FMS). These political export authorizations now authorize the States concerned to proceed with their purchases, which therefore means that all FMS authorizations will not necessarily give rise to definitive sales contracts. For the time being, the US State Department has therefore authorized the sale of aviation fuel to Israel, six Black Hawk helicopters to Lithuania, armored infantry transport vehicles to Argentina and three E- 2D Hawkeye for…

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First two V-22 Ospreys delivered to Japan after several years of waiting

On May 8, 2020, two V-22 Osprey convertible aircraft from the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF – Japan Ground Self-Defense Force) arrived on Japanese soil for the first time. A civilian vehicle transport ship unloaded the two aircraft, rotors and wings folded, on a quay near the Iwakuni military base. This arrival on Japanese soil takes place nearly three years after the delivery of the first aircraft to the JGSDF. Until now, Japanese political and administrative difficulties had forced the aircraft to remain stationed on American soil. First and for the moment alone…

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US authorizes export of combat helicopters to the Philippines, despite tensions between the two countries

At the end of last week, the US State Department approved the sale of helicopters to the Philippines, as part of an FMS (Foreign Military Sales) procedure. As so often with FMS, this does not necessarily presume a future contract between the Philippine Air Force and American industry. Indeed, the FMS are often granted by the political authorities while the negotiations are not finished, which makes it possible to accelerate the sale and the delivery in the event that a firm sale is signed later. This administrative particularity explains why the FMS authorizations relate to two very distinct offers. One of them is about selling...

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With the Invictus, Bell relies on rusticity to win the FARA program

Very often, hardiness is considered, in industrial defense circles as in the armies, as a quality linked to the past, which opposes the desire for technological breakthroughs carried by the majority of new defense equipment programs. However, the aeronautical manufacturer Bell, finalist of the FARA and FLRAA programs to replace the reconnaissance and maneuver helicopters of the US Army, seems to put this value back at the heart of its argument, particularly concerning its Bell 360 "Invictus" retained by the Pentagon. against Sikorsky's Raider-X as part of the FARA program. It must be said that the Invictus represents, in a way, the antithesis of Raider-X. The…

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The future American reconnaissance and attack helicopter is among these 5 models

In 1982, in the midst of the Cold War, the Pentagon decided to launch the design of a new light reconnaissance and attack helicopter intended to replace the US Army's OH-58 Kiowa, but also the Marines' AH-1 Cobra Bodies, and number of armed UH-1 Hueys, equipping the 3 armies. This was the RAH-66 Comanche program entrusted to Boeing and Sikorsky. Initially planned to be produced in 6000 copies, this revolutionary and stealthy device saw its target shrink to a trickle with the collapse of the Soviet bloc, to finally aim for only 600 copies at the start of 2000. Delays, technological impasses and ambitions excessive finally had…

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The US Air Force begins testing of the MH-139 Gray Wolf helicopter designed by the Italian Leonardo

The US Air Force and Boeing have begun operational testing of the new operational support helicopter: the MH-139A Gray Wolf. Designed by the Italian Leonardo and manufactured in collaboration with Boeing in the Leonardo Helicopters factory on the American East Coast, this aircraft derived from the AW.39 model was acquired in 84 copies to replace the last Bell UH-1N Twin Hueys of the USAF. Gray Wolf's primary mission will be to provide logistical support and security for nuclear ballistic missile launch sites in the heartland of the United States. If the contract remains relatively modest on the American scale, it demonstrates a new…

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Leonardo buys Swiss Kopter and its SH09 light helicopter program

The announcement fell last week, during the Heli-Expo show in California: the Italian aeronautical group Leonardo has decided to acquire the Swiss company Kopter Group, formerly known as Marenco-Swisshelicopter and today managed by an investment fund. investment held by Russian billionaire Alexander Mamut. With just over 300 employees, Kopter is only a start-up compared to the Italian giant. However, this particularly innovative Swiss company had a strong argument: its new SH09 light helicopter, which should therefore integrate the Leonardo catalog. For this purchase, Leonardo will pay a minimum of $185 million, but a ten-year earn-out clause should probably lead...

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First flight of the CMV-22B Osprey which will replace the C-2A Greyhound logistics aircraft on US Navy aircraft carriers

While the aircraft is already in service with the Marine Corps and the US Air Force, Bell Boeing announced on January 21 that the CMV-22B for the US Navy would have made its first flight at the center of Bell assembly in Amarillo, Texas. Few details have been revealed on this first flight, but it seems that it would have actually taken place a month earlier, spotters having detected it on December 19, 2019. To be fully operational by 2022, the CMV-22B Osprey will gradually replace the US Navy's C-2A Greyhounds in their Carrier Onboard Delivery (COD) role. In groups...

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