Australian rejects NH90 concerns, but pencils in further review

Australian rejects NH90 concerns, but pencils in further review 1 May, 11, Source: Australian Ministry of Defence

A full diagnostic review of the MRH-90 Multi Role Helicopter Program has now been completed.

The review was ordered in February by the Minister for Defence Stephen Smith and the Minister for Defence Materiel Jason Clare to address delays to the project.

It was chaired by the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Defence Materiel Organisation Mr Warren King supported by a number of independent specialists.

The review has recommended that the project should not be added to the Project of Concern list at this time.

It has recommended that Defence work with the contractor, Australian Aerospace, to implement a remediation plan to improve the availability of the helicopters by addressing engineering and reliability issues.

The project will be the subject of a further diagnostic review later this year to examine the effectiveness of the action taken and whether further action is necessary.

The diagnostic review was ordered to address delays to the project due to a series of key issues including engine failure, transmission oil cooler fan failures and the poor availability of spares.

As reported in both the Defence Annual Report and the ANAO Major Project Report released last year, the project has suffered delays of 12 months for the Navy’s helicopters and 18 months for the Army’s helicopters.

To date, 13 MRH-90 helicopters have been accepted by Defence and are currently being used for testing and initial crew training.

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