16-May-2016 Source: AgustaWestland
As part of their presence at the Navy League Sea-Air Space Exhibition in Washington DC, Leonardo-Finmeccanica has introduced the TH-119 – an AgustaWestland AW119 targeted at the US Navy training requirement. The TH-119 has some distinctive capabilities and features to differentiate it from the civil market AW119Kx. Like the commercial AW119Kx, the TH-119 will be built at the company’s Philadelphia facility.
Despite other sources quoting this as a “new variant”, it is really just a new name – the photo below shows the same aircraft in the same colour scheme at the same event in mid April 2015, over 12 months ago. At that time, AgustaWestland, Bristow, Doss Aviation And Rockwell Collins were coming together to make a joint proposal to US Navy. However, it seems that the team has changed slightly, notably with a new avionics supplier. No other partner was mentioned in this week’s press release.
The TH-119 maintains redundancies on several key systems for maximum safety, while featuring a dual-display Genesys Aerospace cockpit that gives flexibility to instruct from either seat and the option for VFR or IFR (IMC) operations. The manufacturer believes that set the aircraft apart from its competitors include:
* A unique cabin configuration with an additional 180-degree adjustable trainer observation seat at the base of the instrument panel giving the occupant a full view of the cockpit;
* Full Night Vision Device (NVD) compatible cockpit and cabin with high-visibility cockpit doors and a low-profile instrument panel to ensure maximum visibility from the cockpit;
* Re-enforced skids with replaceable skid shoes which support the multiple repetitions of essential touchdown training maneuvers;
* Cargo hook and hoist options supporting advanced training events;
* Five-fuel cell option that provides more than five hours of flight time with pressure refueling port allowing for less downtime to refuel as well as “hot” refueling while the engine is still running.
As the U.S. Navy faces increasing challenges to its current training helicopter platforms, the TH-119 helicopter is the best solution for the U.S. Navy at the right time.