Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

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Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by The Armchair Soldier »

AgustaWestland was an Anglo-Italian helicopter design and manufacturing company, which was a wholly owned subsidiary of Finmeccanica (now known as Leonardo). It was formed in July 2000 as an Anglo-Italian multinational company, when Finmeccanica and GKN merged their respective helicopter subsidiaries (Agusta and Westland Helicopters) to form AgustaWestland, with each holding a 50% share. Finmeccanica acquired GKN's stake in AgustaWestland in 2004.

In 2016, AgustaWestland was merged into Leonardo S.p.A. (formerly Finmeccanica), where it became the company's helicopters division under the Leonardo Helicopters brand.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AgustaWestland

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by dmereifield »

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/201 ... -leonardo/

Britain's helicopter industry is safe 'for decades', says new Leonardo boss...

Interested in the following:

“We have signed a strategic partnering agreement with the UK and that very clearly established what we are looking at towards the future. Unmanned helicopters are going to be a major requirement both for the UK and abroad and we also know there is probably another medium lift aircraft required."

Anybody have any info on these?

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by Defiance »

I presume regarding an unmanned helicopter he's referring to developing the below for the Navy, I believe, in the 2020 timeframe?

http://www.uk.leonardocompany.com/-/aw-rwuas-mod

Presumably the supposed medium lift requirement is aimed at Puma? AFAIK it's OSD is 2025 which puts it a shade before the Merlin at 2030.

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by dmereifield »

Defiance wrote:I presume regarding an unmanned helicopter he's referring to developing the below for the Navy, I believe, in the 2020 timeframe?

http://www.uk.leonardocompany.com/-/aw-rwuas-mod

Presumably the supposed medium lift requirement is aimed at Puma? AFAIK it's OSD is 2025 which puts it a shade before the Merlin at 2030.
Thanks for the info.

We don't seem to have many Puma (ca. 20) from what I can find on google. It doesn't sound cost effective ti design and build something bespoke for just 20ish airframes. Or,
1) is there an intention to acquire more than 20ish? Possibly to replace Merlin with the same thing?
2) is there something already available that can be adapted to meet the requirements?

The RUAS/OPH sounds interesting....

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by Defiance »

dmereifield wrote:
Thanks for the info.

We don't seem to have many Puma (ca. 20) from what I can find on google. It doesn't sound cost effective ti design and build something bespoke for just 20ish airframes. Or,
1) is there an intention to acquire more than 20ish? Possibly to replace Merlin with the same thing?
2) is there something already available that can be adapted to meet the requirements?

The RUAS/OPH sounds interesting....
NP :)

I thought we had closer to ~30 (but that's from memory), they might have a business case which says a potential Puma replacement might appeal to other nations (or the Navy for the Merlin?) which expands it beyond the RAF inventory. It's all about the export market these days, nobody can really afford to rely on HMG anymore.

It opens up some interesting possibilities.

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by shark bait »

The MOD have just moved the rotary UAS to the next stage, beginning phase 2, which is nice, I assumed the solo would just become vaporware.
The Rotary Wing Unmanned Air System, Capability Concept Demonstrator (RWUAS CCD) Phase 2 programme aims to identify, develop and exploit the opportunities offered by emerging technologies, to reduce costs and increase the agility, flexibility, resilience and persistence of UK rotary wing capability.
Surely Puma and Merlin have to be replaced with a common aircraft? I wouldn't be surprised to see that go out to America, like the majority of our Helicopter fleet, especially as they're leaving us behind and pushing ahead with tilt rotors and other advanced vertical lift platforms.

UK has some catching up to do.
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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by Defiance »

shark bait wrote:The MOD have just moved the rotary UAS to the next stage, beginning phase 2, which is nice, I assumed the solo would just become vaporware.
The Rotary Wing Unmanned Air System, Capability Concept Demonstrator (RWUAS CCD) Phase 2 programme aims to identify, develop and exploit the opportunities offered by emerging technologies, to reduce costs and increase the agility, flexibility, resilience and persistence of UK rotary wing capability.
Probably, but in terms of the actual aircraft itself it's the product of the studies which the chap at Leonardo was using to demonstrate the stability of his business I mean.

Then again, he could hardly say anything else could he.
shark bait wrote:Surely Puma and Merlin have to be replaced with a common aircraft? I wouldn't be surprised to see that go out to America, like the majority of our Helicopter fleet, especially as they're leaving us behind and pushing ahead with tilt rotors and other advanced vertical lift platforms.

UK has some catching up to do.
It would make sense depending on if the services can agree on a common set of requirements. If it were to go to the US then that'd be a Govt level decision to lose that national capability which is positive or negative depending on your perspective.

They've just got the economies of scale to make this sort of thing viable over the long term, if we try to be too risky then you end up with a pile of R&D money in the hole and a reduced (or cancelled) program.

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by shark bait »

That last point is what makes me think we'll go American.
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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by dmereifield »

Has there been any indication of how many RUAS we would intend to purchase, once its fully developed?

Could the SW-4 Solo RUAS/OPH also be the basis (directly, or common airframe) for the Gazelle replacement?

Seems like it would be a shame to lose the capability to design and build military helicopters in the UK

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by marktigger »

the Wildcat would make a good Gazelle replacement and transfare the fleet air arms across and get Yeovilton to build new Merlins to replace them.
But agree we probably are going to loose the design and ability to build helicopters. Could like the Puma was Yeovil produce the NH90 or AW189 as a puma replacement

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by shark bait »

If Gazelle does get replaced, it wont be by a manned platform, and most likley by one already on the books.
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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by dmereifield »

shark bait wrote:If Gazelle does get replaced, it wont be by a manned platform, and most likley by one already on the books.
Can you expand on this please?

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by shark bait »

Only my speculation, but Gazelle wont get a replacement, and its only been extended because watchkeepr hasn't come into service yet, when it does they'll claim that replaces Gazelle.

If they're very lucky they might have some cash to tag on to the RN's rotary UAV, but that sounds highly unlikely, a manned replacement sounds almost impossible.
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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by marktigger »

shark bait wrote:Only my speculation, but Gazelle wont get a replacement, and its only been extended because watchkeepr hasn't come into service yet, when it does they'll claim that replaces Gazelle.

If they're very lucky they might have some cash to tag on to the RN's rotary UAV, but that sounds highly unlikely, a manned replacement sounds almost impossible.

for the roles it carries out it needs to be a manned platform to operate in uk airspace

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by dmereifield »

marktigger wrote:
shark bait wrote:Only my speculation, but Gazelle wont get a replacement, and its only been extended because watchkeepr hasn't come into service yet, when it does they'll claim that replaces Gazelle.

If they're very lucky they might have some cash to tag on to the RN's rotary UAV, but that sounds highly unlikely, a manned replacement sounds almost impossible.

for the roles it carries out it needs to be a manned platform to operate in uk airspace
What roles does ot meed to carry out?

Could the SW-4 Solo RUAS/OPH derivative conduct such tasks?

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by dmereifield »

http://www.somersetlive.co.uk/boeing-in ... story.html

"Boeing will be the prime contractor for looking after the helicopters after they are delivered from the US"

"However the US firm is expected to work closely with UK firms working on the current Apache, including Leonardo"

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by shark bait »

The government should have engineered a take over of Westland by Boeing as part of the Apache deal. We soon have a lot of Boeing kit, the support contract for all that kit will be big.
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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by marktigger »

but for decades they have been trying to stay part of a "European" defence group isn't that why heseltine resigned from thatchers govt. Still At least they wern't forced to Mearge with british Aerospace

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by Defiance »

And now it looks as though they're going to be gutted by job cuts and likely close down the site. Boeing might throw them enough of a bone to keep the Government happy but they're wary that the Govt's preferred helo supplier from an industrial perspective is swaying in the 8th round.

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by dmereifield »

Might not be good for Leonardo, but Boeing seem to have thrown HMG quite a large bone:

UP to 1,500 high-quality engineering jobs will be created when the world’s largest aerospace company creates a “centre of excellence” at Boscombe Down

Boeing plan to increase overall UK jobs from 1,300 to 4,000 by 2025, apparently

http://www.salisburyjournal.co.uk/news/ ... ombe_Down/

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by dmereifield »

Leonardo optimistic about AW159's prospects for South Korea's follow-on maritime helicopter requirement

http://www.janes.com/article/67571/leon ... equirement

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by Defiance »

Which is reasonable, they beat the MH-60 in the last round now they have the commonality argument to put forward.

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by ArmChairCivvy »

There are many more Blachawks on the amph. assault cruisers than there are AW helos that constitute the flying artillery for the marines. So the commonality (of the new ASW fleet) could play either way.
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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by Defiance »

ArmChairCivvy wrote:There are many more Blachawks on the amph. assault cruisers than there are AW helos that constitute the flying artillery for the marines. So the commonality (of the new ASW fleet) could play either way.
They may consider lack of commonality between roles as something which is reasonable (utility, ASW etc), whereas lack of commonality within roles feels like it's a more straightforward decision.

All of this is of course prefaced with them being happy with what the Wildcat provides.

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Re: Leonardo (Agusta-Westland)

Post by marktigger »

wonder who else is on their wish list for sales?

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