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Latest NMH contender, refurbed and upgraded ML 60

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Latest NMH contender, refurbed and upgraded ML 60

Old 17th Mar 2022, 19:12
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Latest NMH contender, refurbed and upgraded ML 60

Carried out in the North East


https://www.flightglobal.com/helicop...147964.article
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 20:01
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Originally Posted by NutLoose View Post
Behind a paywall, who's offering them?
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 20:30
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AceHawk Aerospace - look to be plannning on basing themselves in the Teesside airport Freeport.

Ace Aerospace is upgrading Black Hawks for Austria with Ace Deck cockpit. Initial aircraft for the UK would be upgraded at Ace Aeronautics’ site in Alabama, but within 18 months production would switch to Teesside
Despite their similar names and proposed commercial relationship, there are no other links between the two businesses. AceHawk Aerospace was established in late 2021, with Fionnan Collins, Damian Roberts and Darren Wade appointed as directors. .
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 20:33
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The game is afoot. A ‘proper’ SH being built in a ‘Red Wall’ area….could be political and military catnip…..
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 21:18
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Originally Posted by SWBKCB View Post
AceHawk Aerospace was established in late 2021
Anyone else feeling a bit twitchy that a company only 6 months old is punting for a rather large contract refurbing secondhand cabs, with a website that looks like something I did for A Level IT in the early 2000s?
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 21:25
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Ideally suited then.
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 21:38
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Originally Posted by trim it out View Post
Anyone else feeling a bit twitchy that a company only 6 months old is punting for a rather large contract refurbing secondhand cabs, with a website that looks like something I did for A Level IT in the early 2000s?
Still has to be better than selling the MoD's soul to Westlands or whatever they're known as these days.
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 22:30
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I suppose they could spend lots of money on a fancy website and just add it to the cost of the chopper….
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 22:39
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Originally Posted by JulieAndrews View Post
I suppose they could spend lots of money on a fancy website and just add it to the cost of the chopper….
Could be a pretty cheap helicopter if the software developer is doing the website and the avionics.
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 23:33
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Originally Posted by trim it out View Post
Could be a pretty cheap helicopter if the software developer is doing the website and the avionics.
excellent - a cheap ‘Black Hawk’ - what can be better - an expensive O&G paint job ?
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Old 17th Mar 2022, 23:39
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Originally Posted by JulieAndrews View Post
excellent - a cheap ‘Black Hawk’ - what can be better - an expensive O&G paint job ?
Whatever we get will be distinctly average, the spectrum of roles it is to fill is too broad for a one type fits all in my opinion.

Just hope Puma can carry the flag for 212 and 412 as well it's own commitments long enough to see the new type in!
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Old 18th Mar 2022, 02:32
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Originally Posted by trim it out View Post
Whatever we get will be distinctly average, the spectrum of roles it is to fill is too broad for a one type fits all in my opinion.

Just hope Puma can carry the flag for 212 and 412 as well it's own commitments long enough to see the new type in!
It replaces an aircraft that was distinctly average - not carrier friendly, blows over in a high wind and poor hot n high.
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Old 18th Mar 2022, 10:24
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Phased Maintenance Inspections combined with integrated HUMS make ML-70 free of life limits unlike peer composite airframes
That level of ignorance doesn’t bode well!
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Old 18th Mar 2022, 11:22
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Originally Posted by 212man View Post

That level of ignorance doesn’t bode well!
Not sure there is anything about the Black Hawk that the folk at Ace Aeronautics don’t know?
I imagine article was referring to the composite elements of 60M not reaching their 8000-hr life limit?
I can’t imagine that they were mis-quoted by the press :-)
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Old 18th Mar 2022, 11:29
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Is anything known about the owners of AceHawk AerospaceLtd other than the details listed on company house.
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Old 18th Mar 2022, 13:49
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Originally Posted by JulieAndrews View Post
Not sure there is anything about the Black Hawk that the folk at Ace Aeronautics don’t know?
I imagine article was referring to the composite elements of 60M not reaching their 8000-hr life limit?
I can’t imagine that they were mis-quoted by the press :-)
My quote was from their website, not the press. HUMS looks at dynamic components, and (amongst other things) detects early deterioration and anomalies. Phased maintenance breaks up large tasks into smaller ones, that can be done in shorter periods, so rather than being offline for a few weeks in one go, an airframe can be down for a day or so at a time more frequently. Neither have any bearing on ultimate component life.
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Old 18th Mar 2022, 14:27
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Added the transcript of the original post so you can read it.

https://www.flightglobal.com/helicop...147964.article

A surprise contender for the UK’s New Medium Helicopter (NMH) requirement has broken cover, pitching pre-owned Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawks that would be extensively upgraded at a new facility in the northeast of England.

Teesside airport-based AceHawk Aerospace argues that its ML-70 helicopter will offer the UK armed forces the capability of the Black Hawk without the steep price for brand-new aircraft, while also providing highly skilled jobs for domestic workers.



Source: US Army

Donor airframes would be acquired from the US Army and other sources

It describes the ML-70 as “an evolved and renewed combat-proven H-60 helicopter”, which gains new dynamic components and an updated Garmin G5000 glass cockpit as part of US firm Ace Aeronautics’ Ace Deck VL-60 upgrade.

“We genuinely believe that choosing another route would jeopardise the capability, timeline, value-for-money, sustainability and social requirements of the NMH programme,” AceHawk states.

Although the Black Hawk is the “accepted aircraft of choice for multi-mission operations with over 15 million flight hours”, including 2 million combat hours, “it comes with a premium price” for new aircraft – and a “lengthy waiting list due to demand”. There would also be “little UK value” if Sikorsky produces aircraft for the country at its plant in Mielec, Poland, AceHawk argues.

Donor UH-60 airframes would be sourced from the US Army, which divests older aircraft under its Black Hawk Exchange and Sales Team initiative, and from other international operators.

Modification and delivery of the pre-owned Black Hawks to the ML-70 standard would largely take place at AceHawk’s facility at Teesside International airport in the northeast of England.

This, it says, would address the government’s levelling up agenda, bringing jobs to an area of relatively high unemployment.



Source: Peter Lechner/Bundesheer

Ace Aerospace is upgrading Black Hawks for Austria with Ace Deck cockpit

Initial aircraft for the UK would be upgraded at Ace Aeronautics’ site in Alabama, but within 18 months production would switch to Teesside. An aircraft and engine MRO facility would be established at the same location.

AceHawk also hopes to target the export market through its relationship with Ace Aeronautics.

Randy Nolin, chief technical officer at Ace Aeronautics, describes the UK business as its European “partner”, which helps to make up for its lack of “an international business development team”.

“We won’t give them everything in Europe but if they come to us with a prospect it’s theirs,” he says.

“Everybody frowns upon used aircraft – they’ll tell you it’s been beat up or thrown around – but unlike aircraft with a throw-away time it offers unlimited airframe life. To me it’s all about the robustness and the proven combat history of the Black Hawk.”

Ace Aeronautics is updating nine UH-60s, plus is sourcing an additional three airframes, for the VL-60 modification programme for Austria.

Despite their similar names and proposed commercial relationship, there are no other links between the two businesses. AceHawk Aerospace was established in April 2021, with Fionnan Collins, Damian Roberts and Darren Wade appointed as directors. The company’s shares are split equally between the three.

The NMH is designed to replace the Royal Air Force’s 23-strong fleet of Puma HC2 transport helicopters, plus smaller fleets of Bell 212s and 412s, and Airbus Helicopters Dauphins. Service entry for the NMH is pegged for 2025.

This article has been edited to clarify the attribution of a quote in the 11th paragraph and the date when AceHawk was established.

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Old 18th Mar 2022, 15:25
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Originally Posted by N707ZS View Post
Is anything known about the owners of AceHawk AerospaceLtd other than the details listed on company house.
Damian Roberts - founder of Roberts Aviation Solutions, Oil & Gas Helicopter Captain & Flight Safety Manager @ Dancopter A/S, Helicopter Captain, Ghana @ NHV Helicopters

Widely experienced in aviation; from global military transport, short-notice European VIP and corporate aircraft leasing requirements through to Offshore Oil & Gas Captain. Over 8000 flying hours on all sorts since it all started in 1983. Incident-free flying record whilst operating anywhere from Africa to Ascot - helped by a pro-active attitude and by paying attention to the detail. 'Prevention'​ is more often easier to implement and far less painful than having to apply a 'cure'​...... More of a 'do-er'​ than a 'procrastinator'​...... You produce better results by taking time out to keep your axe sharp - rather than to continue chopping with a blunt edge ;-)
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Old 18th Mar 2022, 16:05
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Great idea ! Decent amount of costs will get back into UK economy. Fit them with engines from messrs Rolls Royce and a suite of Smiths instruments and we're cookin on gas.
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Old 21st Mar 2022, 23:10
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which is probably the exact reason they are not doing that
-701D (same as AH64E and EH101 upgrade) and Garmin 5000H so says the website. Far too logical!
Had to laugh at the quip from someone earlier......a 'start-up' established specifically to ensure that UK finally gets the 'Black Hawk' as NMH forming around the time the NMH idea became more than just a dream - go figure!
You don't do yourself any favours :-)
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