Airbus Helicopters, October 14, 2020 - Albacete - NHIndustries and its Partner Companies (Airbus Helicopters, Leonardo and Fokker) have delivered the first NH90 to the Spanish Air Force that will boost their search and rescue (SAR) and combat search and rescue (CSAR) mission capabilities.
The Spanish Air Force will receive 12 NH90s intended to replace its aging fleet of AS332 Super Pumas and will be based in Cuatro Vientos, near Madrid.
Spain has ordered a total of 45 NH90s in the tactical transport version, to be operated by the three Armed Forces. 13 helicopters have already been delivered to the Spanish Army Airmobile Force (FAMET) for the Maneuver III Battalion in Agoncillo.
Javier Salto, General of the Air Force highlighted that: “For the Spanish Air Force, the NH90 provides an essential asset capable of performing a wide range of missions, including tactical transport of troops and logistics support in peacekeeping or reconstruction missions and, of course, the main search and rescue missions in hostile conditions which is one of the most demanding and complex missions for helicopter units.”
“The NH90 is particularly suited to operating in hot and high conditions and will prove to be a real asset to the critical missions performed by the Spanish Air Force” said Nathalie Tarnaud-Laude, Head of NH90 programme at Airbus Helicopters and President of NHIndustries.
The NH90 will provide all three of the Spanish armed forces with a versatile and modern transport system helicopter that offers unrivalled military capabilities.
The Spanish variant of the NH90 features next-generation General Electric CT7 8F5 engines, a personalized communications system and a sophisticated electronic warfare system developed by Indra and will be supported by training devices (including full flight simulators), automatic maintenance equipment (SAMe), and automatic mission planning system (AMPS) developed as well by Indra.
Airbus Helicopters in Spain is involved in the manufacturing of the fuselage and the avionics software development and integration.
First Lobo arrived at Cuatro Vientos
Ejercito del Aire, October 19, 2020 - The first NH90 helicopter has arrived at Wing 48. Last Friday it flew from the Airbus Helicopters Spain facilities in Albacete to the Cuatro Vientos air base. From this moment, Wing 48 will be the unit of the Air Force that operates them.
Thus ends the certification and acceptance process that the General Directorate of Armament and Material (DGAM) was carrying out in the La Mancha factory, since last June 18, it flew from Airbus Helicopters headquarters, in Marignane, France.
The NH90 is a multipurpose military helicopter developed by the European NHIndustries consortium, made up of Airbus Helicopters, Leonardo Helicopters and Fokker Aerostructure, of which it stands out: its fly-by-wire control system, which replaces conventional manual flight controls with an interface electronics; its on-board monitoring and diagnostic system; its four-axis automatic pilot, which allows it to be stationary autonomously; and its composite material fuselage, which provides it with greater resistance to damage while drastically reducing its weight.
The first NH90 of the Air Force is a GSPA Standard 2, which features improvements such as an electro-optical panoramic camera with infrared vision for search and rescue (SAR) missions; a tactical radio for secure communications; satellite communications; a high-frequency communication transceiver to provide voice links in remote locations and at extreme altitudes and temperatures; and a light mount for the 7.62mm MAG-58 machine gun.
The HD.29 weapons system, the NH90's military name, will be operated by the 803 Squadron of Wing 48, replacing the HD.21 (AS332 Super Puma), which entered service in 1982 and which provides for the decommissioning of its last helicopter in this squad in December 2021.
The arrival of the NH90 enhances the capabilities of the 803 Squadron and its historic expeditionary vocation. From its arrival and until obtaining the IOC -Initial Operational Capabilty-, the new weapons system will pass a series of consecutive phases. The objective of the first two will be the improvement of the new NH90 instructors and the subsequent transformation of the rest of the pilots of the 803 Squadron. Subsequently, all operational capabilities will be acquired, also progressively, starting with search and rescue and medical aero-evacuation (AE) capabilities, and continuing with personnel recovery (PR) in hostile environment and special air operations (SAO) .
To meet the new needs, construction of the new hangar is in its final phase to house eight helicopters for parking and maintenance. Between 2020 and 2021, the Air Force will receive another five NH90 Standard 2 helicopters, within the framework of the first phase and, later, another six NH90 helicopters of the GSPA Standard 3 version will be delivered.