The multi-role NH90 helicopterâ€™s ability to support large troop movements over long distances were demonstrated during the Finnish Defense Forces’ main field exercise this month, in which 157 soldiers were transported 320 kilometers during two operational rotations.
For this exercise, the Finnish NH90 Utti Jaeger Regimentâ€™s Helicopter Battalion was given a mission to relocate 157 conscripts of the Guard Jaeger Regiment from the Helsinki area to Kauhava.
Eight NH90 TTHs (tactical transport helicopters) â€“ along with an additional helicopter in reserve â€“ were assigned to realize this ambitious mission, which was accomplished in five hours during two rotations. The operation involved a total of 40 flight hours with an 80 percent availability, and it by far outperformed the Finnish Defense Forcesâ€™ expectations. Two hot refueling were conducted during the operation, with four helicopters being refueled at same time during servicing lasting only nine minutes.
â€œThe NH90 TTH is technologically very advanced, very fast and very agile compared to any tactical transport helicopter in the world,â€ said Lieutenant Colonel Ari Pellinen, Commanding Officer of the Helicopter Battalion. â€œFor the pilot, it is a real pleasure to fly â€“ like a high-performance sports car with 16 seats in the back.â€
The success of this massive troop airlift exercise demonstrated the competences of the Finnish Defense Forcesâ€™ pilots, mechanics and technicians with respect to planning, execution and maintenance of the NH90. In addition, it was the result of a strong cooperation between all actors who have contributed to supporting each phase of this military exercise â€“ which was named â€œPyÃ¶rremyrskyâ€ (the Finnish word for â€œwhirlwindâ€) and performed on June 8.
â€œThe support of Eurocopter for this exercise was critically important as increased flow of spare parts, and Patria Helicopters Utti has been of great assistance in reducing the workload of the Battalion’s technical personnel,â€ Lt. Col. Pellinen added. â€œDuring the exercise, the maintenance actions were carried out by Battalion’s own technical personnel. Eurocopterâ€™s On-Site-Support (OSS) in Utti has constantly been important in providing complementary instructions and enhancing the communications between Eurocopter and the end user.”
To date, the Utti Jaeger Regimentâ€™s Helicopter Battalion has received 10 NH90 TTHs out of the 20 ordered by Finland from the NHIndustries consortium. â€œThe achievement of this tremendous troop transportation by the Finnish Defense Forces marks an important milestone in the NH90â€™s successful fielding,â€ stated Wolfgang Schoder, the Executive Vice President for Programs at Eurocopter.
The NH90 is a 9-10 metric ton-class helicopter designed to modernize and boost the capability of tactical transport and anti-submarine combat fleets. It is a fly-by-wire, all-composite aircraft with the highest crashworthiness standards. Equipped with a large c
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