Bundeswehr, November 24, 2020 - The navy will get new helicopters for their frigates: They will be called Sea Tiger and can mainly be used in the fight against submarines and ships.
The budget committee of the German Bundestag has now released around 2.7 billion euros for the 31 multi-role helicopters.
The Sea Tiger base as the Marine transport helicopter Sea Lion on the naval variant of the NATO helicopter NH-90. The new helicopters will be equipped for various operational roles.
In addition to the multi-role helicopters, the contracts also include accessories, spare parts and training aids for around 2.7 billion euros. The Sea Tigers are scheduled to replace the Sea Lynx Mk88A machines that have been in service since the 1980s by the end of 2025 .
An important weapon system for the frigates
On-board helicopters are an integral part of the frigates. The helicopters perform a variety of tasks. The new Sea Tigers will in future be the Bundeswehr's only multi-role combat helicopters. For the frigates, they offer protection from enemy attacks at close range. Armed with torpedoes or guided missiles, the on-board helicopters are used both in submarine hunting and to combat ships. In addition, the aircraft can perform transport tasks from on board and be used in search and rescue missions within a ship formation. On-board helicopters expand the capabilities of the frigates enormously.
Sea Tiger and Sea Lion share a platform
As with the Sea Lion marine transport helicopter , the NH-90 Naval Frigate Helicopter (NFH) forms the structural basis for the new multi-role capable on-board helicopters . The Bundeswehr expects this to offer advantages in terms of training and maintenance, as well as the stocking of operating materials and spare parts. The multi-role Sea Tiger is primarily designed and equipped for combat tasks, while the Sea Lion is primarily optimized for sovereign search and rescue tasks (SAR, Search and Rescue) as well as transport tasks .
Bundeswehr orders 31 NH90 helicopters for shipborne operations
Airbus Helicopters, November 26, 2020 - Donauwörth - The German Bundeswehr has ordered 31 NH90 helicopters, to be known as Sea Tiger, for the German Navy’s shipborne operations.
Nathalie Tarnaud-Laude, President of NH90 Helicopter Industries (NHI) and Giorgio Gomma, General Manager of the NATO Helicopter Management Agency (NAHEMA), on behalf of the Federal Office for Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support of the German Armed Forces (BAAINBw) signed the contract on 26 November. The helicopters will replace the German Navy’s Sea Lynx Mk88A fleet which entered into service in 1981. The Bundeswehr has already ordered 18 NH90 Sea Lion naval transport helicopters, seven of which have already been delivered.
"With the Sea Lion and Sea Tiger, the German Navy will have state-of-the-art, high performance helicopters and can benefit from the advantages of a harmonized fleet," said Bruno Even, CEO of Airbus Helicopters. “We look forward to working, together with our partners, to deliver the unique naval capabilities that the NH90 NFH has to offer as early as 2025,” he added.
The widespread use of the NH90 TTH by the German Army and the NH90 NFH by the German Navy enables considerable synergies in terms of logistics and training. Naval flight crews and technical staff have already been undergoing basic NH90 training together with Army’s NH90 crews since the introduction of the Sea Lion.
Both the Sea Tiger and the Sea Lion are derivatives of the NH90 NFH. The Sea Tiger is based on the Sea Lion configuration, enhanced by mission capabilities and equipment in order to carry out their specific tasks. In addition to reconnaissance and transport, the shipborne Sea Tigers missions include engaging targets above and below the surface. For this purpose, the Sea Tiger is, amongst others, equipped with an active dipping sonar, passive sonar buoys, and weapons (torpedoes and missiles).
100 naval NH90 helicopters have already been delivered to six nations and have completed over 70,000 flight hours in search and rescue, humanitarian, and military operations. There are currently 430 NH90 helicopters in service worldwide that have accumulated over 270,000 flight hours.