The Italian Army’s UH-169B training helicopters have reached a first major operational milestone with 1,000 flight hours – Leonardo
Two UH-169B helicopters in service since 2H2020 prepare crews for the future operational transition to the all-new Advanced Multirole Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) program
Quote from the Italian army “This is an important step for the Italian military aviation, in cooperation with Leonardo, towards the future”
Over 290 orders and options to date for the AW169 from customers worldwide and over 130 are already in service worldwide, performing utility, surveillance, special ops, maritime patrol tasks , land reconnaissance, training, rescue and firefighting.
The Italian army’s two AW169 basic twin-engine training helicopters recently achieved an important first milestone, accumulating 1,000 flight hours in operations. The type has been in service with the Italian Army since July 2020, when the first aircraft was delivered to the 2nd Army Aviation Regiment “Sirio” based in Lamezia Terme in southern Italy, followed by second helicopter a few months later.
The introduction of the latest generation training helicopter (designated UH-169B) enables the Italian army to prepare its crews for the future operational transition. It will be an all-new Advanced Multirole Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) program, developed from dual-use benchmark AW169, which targets a longer-term fleet modernization and rationalization plan. The two AW169 trainers will allow the Italian Army to familiarize themselves with the basic characteristics of the platform during the development of the new LUH. These have been delivered with full turnkey logistics support and a pilot / maintenance technician training package that will maintain high uptime rates and ensure operational readiness.
The LUH program aims to gradually replace aging models, including the A109, AB206, AB205, AB212 and AB412 to meet changing operational needs. In addition, the program benefits from a more efficient supply chain based on a “one platform” approach. The introduction of the AW169 LUH, specially developed for the Italian army, builds on the reference base of the AW169M military helicopters, and also offers the advantage of common points and logistical, operational and technical synergies, certification and unique training between the growing AW169 fleets of government operators in Italy. This enhances the possibility of performing effective and safe joint operations with other users of this modern type and represents a quantum leap in homeland security, emergency response capability and overall cost / efficiency throughout. life cycle for decades to come. The AW169 LUH global program is based on an advanced multirole configuration with dedicated flight / mission equipment including, among others, a skid landing gear, the Leonardo MAIR (Multi Aperture InfraRed) threat alert system and a advanced C4 command, control and communications system to ensure full interoperability with other assets in the NATO environment. The Italian army will initially receive 15 AW169 LUHs from 2023.
Quote from the Italian Army “The 2nd Army Aviation Regiment ‘Sirio’ is the flight unit of the Italian Army designated to study and check in flight the basic version of the aircraft, in order to adjust the modifications aimed at its reconfiguration in the military version LUH “.
Note to editors on the AW169M helicopter
The AW169M is the military variant of the latest generation AW169 twin-engine helicopter, designed to the latest FAR / JAR / EASA requirements as well as military user, homeland security and government standards. The platform exhibits exceptional power, agility and maneuverability, which provide excellent handling characteristics in a wide range of operating conditions, including hot and high temperature. The unique transmission design powers the hydraulic, electrical and air conditioning systems with the rotors off (APU mode) maximizing response time and uptime. The cabin is the most spacious in its class and features a constant height cross section for quick reconfiguration and ease of access. Pilots benefit from a next-generation open architecture avionics suite, featuring a fully digital glass cockpit and unprecedented external visibility, providing advanced tactical and situational awareness. Customers around the world have placed orders and options for more than 290 AW169 helicopters today, including military and law enforcement / utility operators, to perform a range of missions, including l utility, surveillance, special operations, maritime patrol, land reconnaissance, training, rescue and fire. -combat. More than 130 AW169s are already in service today and have totaled more than 100,000 operating flight hours worldwide.