US Army Selects UH-145 as UH-1 and OH-58 Replacement

Released on Friday, June 30, 2006
United States of America
OH-58D Kiowa Warrior
UH-1N Huey
UH-72A Lakota
CLS - Contractor Logistics Support
EADS - European Aeronautic Defence and Space
USA - United States of America
EADS North America and Eurocopter have committed the full resources of their UH-145 industry team to the production, supply and in-service support of this helicopter following its selection as the U.S. Army's next-generation Light Utility Helicopter (LUH). The LUH requirement is for up to 352 aircraft with a potential program life-cycle value of U.S. $ 3 billion.

The LUH award is a continuation of Eurocopter's over 20-year heritage as a helicopter supplier to American government agencies which support U.S. National and Homeland Security agencies including the U.S. Coast Guard, the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI. The decision, announced today by the U.S. Army, marks EADS North America's and Eurocopter's first major win as a prime contractor for the U.S. military.

The UH-145 is a version of the commercial EC145. Its selection by the U.S. Army for this important mission demonstrates the service's confidence in EADS' and Eurocopter's ability to meet the fast-paced delivery schedule and support requirements of these critical Army aircraft. The program will in-source U.S. jobs of high value and contribute to homeland security.

EADS North America leads a UH-145 team of companies that includes four primary partners: American Eurocopter, a joint subsidiary of EADS North America and Eurocopter, which will handle the helicopter's production, assembly and delivery; Sikorsky Aircraft, responsible for contractor logistics support (CLS); WestWind Technologies, for systems integration, engineering support and program management expertise; and CAE USA of Tampa, Florida, the supplier of UH-145 cockpit procedures trainers.

UH-145 program management will be handled by the EADS North America Defense business unit of EADS North America. A network of leading U.S. subcontractors has been created for the Light Utility Helicopter, bringing together companies such as the NORDAM Group, Keith Products, Thales USA, Turbomeca USA , Wulfsberg Electronics., Honeywell, Goodrich, Aerolite, Armor Holdings and L3 Communications.

The UH-145's industrial activity will be centered at American Eurocopter's Columbus, Mississippi facility, which is to undergo a major expansion to accommodate the Light Utility Helicopter program. Production of the UH-145 - a customized version of Eurocopter's EC145 multi-mission helicopter, currently built in Germany - will be transferred to Columbus in a series of steps that begins with partial assembly, followed by full assembly and the subsequent U.S. manufacture of major subsystems.

American Eurocopter's expansion of the 92,000-sq.-ft. Columbus facility will begin almost immediately, with its size at least tripling to accommodate the UH-145 program activity. Employment will grow by approximately 250 persons, bringing it to more than 360.

EADS North America and Eurocopter have made a significant commitment to the UH-145 program, with the first helicopter already in assembly for delivery to the Army this November. In addition, components have been allocated for the manufacture of seven more UH-145s.


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