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RAF announces Puma Replacement plan

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RAF announces Puma Replacement plan

Old 10th May 2023, 12:33
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Originally Posted by Blackhawk9
Never seen that setup before , Turkey? , only seats that are crashworthy are the 4 x Sik seats along the backwall, obviously not a requirement by that operator. would sooner be on the floor than try and move around those seats with gear on.

But looking at the images, if you bin those two centre fore aft row seats, the four rear facing seats, the two outboard (door) forward facing seats and retain the two forward facing inner ones, that gives you the equivalent of a current Puma's fully equipped troop capacity with plenty of room to move around the cabin.. the extra possible seating for other roles is a bonus.
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Old 18th May 2023, 11:35
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Wow, didn’t see that coming!🙄

https://www.flightglobal.com/defence...153340.article
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Old 19th May 2023, 09:37
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I recall a press release from an MoD/JHC source several years’ ago, saying something along the lines, that the price to sustain the Puma HC2 fleet in-service post 2025 was more than a ‘King’s Ransom’, so I dread to think what the cost to the UK taxpayer will be in its final years of service, until its well overdue OSD arrives.

Yet another example of the UK MoD’s inability to make a procurement selection on time, more so when you note that all three platforms in the run-off are OTS options.
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Old 20th May 2023, 23:49
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Chinook 240. Indeed! I think NMH is now highly likely to be cancelled. Any delay to a 2025 ISD (which, as a fully operational and certified military platform only the UH-60 has a hope of making….) will nudge it closer to the window for the already delayed, for near term cash reasons, the much more important MH-4…..errr….sorry ‘H-47ER’ acquisition. That, and Chinook CSP, are the army’s aviation priorities now they’ve secured AH-64E. I doubt Army HQ’s / JHC’s budget runs to doing both at the same time. Furthermore, if Puma is extended to 2028 then the ‘gap’ between NMH entering service and the need to start scoping Merlin/Wildcat replacements shrinks to a handful of years - and MoD has ‘form’ with cancelling the likes of SABR and FRC, then combining programs, and announcing it as ‘new money’ (and the NMH money effectively disappears). MoD seem to think that, if it survives, NMH could be the ML backstop while Merlin is replaced - but without any ship compatibility requirements, that’s a bit of a non-starter. The only ‘interim’ that makes any sense continues to be Black Hawk, and the US Army is committed to the aircraft until the 2070s. Give Yeovil some cash to design the MUAS part of Wildcat replacement, and an assurance they will either licence build the V-280 with UK avionics/DAS (which I predict Leo will also do for the Italians….) or produce the Euro NGR (likely to be aligned with Franco-German needs to support Airbus), and buy 20-30 UH-60s would be my suggestion…..
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Old 20th May 2023, 23:54
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HiLife - not strictly true that all 3 are ‘OTS options’. H175M doesn’t exist; it’s not certified as a military aircraft, has zero military provenance and it will take years to design, fit and qualify the necessary military equipment. The ‘H175M’ demonstrator is simply a H175 painted black, and still has its Chinese DNA. AW149 is better placed, but I don’t doubt that MoD would not be satisfied with the mission equipment choices or TTPs of such stellar reference customers as the Thai Police and Egyptian Navy. Black Hawk has an ‘out of the box’ capability, literally dozens of certified options and several high quality users to crib TTPs etc from.
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Old 19th Jun 2023, 11:40
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Bidders likely to wait until September for next stage of UK New Medium Helicopter tender | News | Flight Global
Procurement of a replacement for the Royal Air Force’s Puma HC2 rotorcraft under the UK’s New Medium Helicopter (NMH) programme appears to be further delayed, with no clarity on when the next stage of the tender will begin.

Shortlisted candidates for the £1.2 billion ($1.5 billion) contract for up to 44 helicopters were identified last October 2022, but the process has not advanced since then.



At that point, Ministry of Defence (MoD) officials were intending to issue an Invitation to Tender – detailing the precise requirements for the contest – to the selected bidders by the first quarter of 2023.

That deadline subsequently slipped to mid-year and now, FlightGlobal understands, the document will not be released before September 2023 at the earliest.

Further delays to the acquisition increase the likelihood that the MoD will fail to meet its target of introducing the NMH by 2025.

However, the MoD declines to comment on the timeline for the procurement. “Responses to a questionnaire have been evaluated to determine a shortlist of suppliers for the New Medium Helicopter competition,” it says.

“Suppliers were notified of the outcome in October 2022 and successful candidates will be invited to participate in the second half of the competition, due to be launched later this year.”



n addition to the RAF’s Pumas, the NMH is intended to replace three other types: Bell 212s and 412s, and Airbus Helicopters AS365 Dauphins used by the Army Air Corps for special forces missions.

The two Bell types, operated in Cyprus and Brunei, have already been retired and replaced by Pumas, seeing that helicopter’s life extended to at least 2025, if not beyond.

At recent House of Commons Defence Select Committee hearing, Air Marshal Sir Richard Knighton said a further extension, to 2027 or 2028, would be “feasible”.

Airbus Helicopters provides support for the Puma fleet through an ongoing sustainment contract that currently runs through 2025.
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Old 23rd Jun 2023, 16:44
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Unfortunately I am not permitted to post links yet, but the Aviation Press is publishing a statement today from Sikorsky, stating that if they win NMH then they would 'assemble' the aircraft in the UK and possibly use that facility to build export variants for other nations as well. This clearly makes their bid stronger in terms of UK social and economic benefit. Now, the term 'assemble' could mean many things and does not neccessarily imply a full production facility, but the fact that this is being mentioned at all is very promising in my view as the Blackhawk is clearly the only NMH contender that is fit for the role.

Let us hope this program survives and is awarded sooner rather than later. As things stand, it could potentially be put off into a new Government and then all bets would be off.
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Old 23rd Jun 2023, 18:07
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https://www.flightglobal.com/helicop...153864.article

Link for the article.

This significantly alters the dynamic and puts AH and Leonardo on the back foot.
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Old 19th Jul 2023, 09:58
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Numbers being scaled back:

https://www.flightglobal.com/helicop...154164.article

Very political that "up to 44" now sits in the range 25-35......
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Old 24th Aug 2023, 14:05
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Looks as though NMH is now on an indefinite delay. The longer the legacy aircraft are kept going, the closer we get to the advent of FLRAA and FVL being viable options. I suspect that the winner of the NMH program may end up being none of the current bidders.

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/uk-he...d/?trackingId=

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Old 24th Aug 2023, 14:18
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Originally Posted by Lucifer Morningstar
Looks as though NMH is now on an indefinite delay. The longer the legacy aircraft are kept going, the closer we get to the advent of FLRAA and FVL being viable options. I suspect that the winner of the NMH program may end up being none of the current bidders.

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/uk-he...d/?trackingId=
Looks like the Puma is replacing itself at the moment
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Old 24th Aug 2023, 14:29
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Well Leonardo were hosting an event this week very much aimed at promoting the 149 as heavily as possible - it looked very nice close up

It would mean jobs kept at Yeovil which we know historically plays well with the politicians.
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Old 25th Aug 2023, 11:53
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Originally Posted by [email protected]
Well Leonardo were hosting an event this week very much aimed at promoting the 149 as heavily as possible - it looked very nice close up

It would mean jobs kept at Yeovil which we know historically plays well with the politicians.
You mean I was in the presence of forum royalty and never knew?
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Old 25th Aug 2023, 12:03
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You mean I was in the presence of forum royalty and never knew?
Who do you think flew the Sea King in​​​​​​​
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Old 25th Aug 2023, 12:05
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Originally Posted by [email protected]
Who do you think flew the Sea King in
My compliments on a fine showing then. Whither the promised Wessex though?
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Old 25th Aug 2023, 13:35
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A knackered starboard engine which has been hot starting for a while and is now toast and due a replacement
Fortunately we have a few spares.
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Old 25th Aug 2023, 15:51
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Originally Posted by [email protected]
Well Leonardo were hosting an event this week very much aimed at promoting the 149 as heavily as possible - it looked very nice close up

It would mean jobs kept at Yeovil which we know historically plays well with the politicians.

Are jobs really at risk given this week's news? Or is it the usual Yeovil grab of everything with associated threats to ensure no competition?

https://www.flightglobal.com/helicop...154670.article
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Old 25th Aug 2023, 16:21
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Originally Posted by [email protected]
A knackered starboard engine which has been hot starting for a while and is now toast and due a replacement
Fortunately we have a few spares.
Pssst.... you wanna buy some? sadly not Wessex ones.


https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/115628263...Bk9SR5yIvNTFYg
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Old 25th Aug 2023, 16:23
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Thanks Nutty but we have quite a few proper Wessex ones to choose from
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Old 25th Aug 2023, 21:37
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Originally Posted by Northernstar
Are jobs really at risk given this week's news? Or is it the usual Yeovil grab of everything with associated threats to ensure no competition?

https://www.flightglobal.com/helicop...154670.article
I'd say it's a good opportunity to play a little waiting game then break the Yeovil stranglehold if they've got enough orders of WC/me from elsewhere. Get Sikorsky in with some actual battlefield helicopters
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