Germany has ordered 31 NH90 NFH (NATO Frigate Helicopters) helicopters, known as Sea Tigers, for operations on board its naval vessels. At the Airpa Helicopters Espaa plant in Albacete, all front and center fuselages are manufactured, as is the case with all versions of the NH90 helicopter ex works. These aircraft will replace the Sea Lynx Mk88A fleet, which entered service with the German Navy in 1981. Airbus Helicopters also confirms that NH90 NFHs will be delivered from 2025.
This contract and its operating conditions will be limited to what has already been published on the dates when the NH90 HSPN, the Spanish Navy version of the NFH variant, could be operational for the Spanish Navy. This would take no more than five years from the signing of the contract, a date very far from 15 years and 2035 that we were talking about.
The German armed forces previously ordered 18 NH90 Sea Lion sea helicopters, seven of which have already been delivered. Nathalie Tarnaud-Laude, President of the NH90 Helicopter Industries (NHI), and Giorgio Gomma, Director General of the NATO Helicopter Management Agency (NAHEMA), as representatives of the Federal Office for Equipment, Information Technology and Support in the Service of the German Armed Forces (BAAINBw) signed the contract today signed
The widespread use of the NH90 TTH by the German Armed Forces and the NH90 NFH by the German Navy will bring significant synergies in terms of logistics and training. Since the introduction of the sea lion, naval aviation crews and technical personnel have received basic training on the NH90 along with the Army NH90 crews. In Spain, the Ministry of Defense plans to introduce the NH90 as a common platform for the Army, Air Force and Navy, which will result in significant logistical savings and the savings resulting from life cycle costs.
Both the sea tiger and the sea lion are variants of the NH90 NFH. The sea tiger is based on the configuration of the sea lion, enhanced mission skills, and equipment required for certain operations. In addition to transport and reconnaissance, the missions of the embarked sea tigers also include targets above and below the surface. For this, the sea tiger is equipped with an active immersion sonar, passive sonobuoys and armament (torpedoes and missiles).
With the sea lion and the sea tiger, the German Navy will have state-of-the-art high-performance helicopters and benefit from the advantages of a harmonized fleet, explains Bruno Even, CEO of Airbus Helicopters. We look forward to working with our partners to deliver the exceptional marine capabilities that the NH90 can offer from 2025, he added.
One hundred NH90 naval helicopters have already been delivered to six countries and have completed more than 70,000 hours of flight time in search and rescue, humanitarian and military operations. There are currently 430 NH90 helicopters in use worldwide, with a total of more than 270,000 flight hours.
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