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HANGAR TALK


Bell Helicopter SEP Program’s Finish 13 Years of “On Time” Performance for Kiowa Warrior


Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc.


company and the U.S. Army Armed Scout Helicopter program office announced recently the completion of the final Safety Enhancement Program (SEP) OH- 58D delivered to the Army as part of the Kiowa Warrior refresh pro- gram. The program experienced 13 years of on time deliveries. "Delivering each of the 292


Bell Helicopter’s 429 Selected For Royal Australian Navy Retention and Motivation Initiative Contract


Bell Helicopter recently announced it was awarded a new contract by Raytheon Australia to provide three Bell 429s for the Royal Australian Navy's Retention and Motivation Initiative. The Retention and Motivation


Initiative provides the Royal Australian Navy with supported aircraft to allow junior qualified aircrew to consolidate and enhance their skills prior to flying operational helicopters. Under the terms of this four-year contract, these three state-of-the-art Bell 429s will replace currently operat- ed helicopters in the fleet and fly a minimum of 1,500 flight hours per year. "We are pleased by the Royal Australian Navy's enthusiasm for


ROTORCRAFTPROFESSIONAL


the Bell 429, and we are looking forward to working with Raytheon Australia in supporting the Royal Australian Navy's Retention and Motivation Initiative," said Sameer Rehman, Bell Helicopter’s managing director for the Asia Pacific region. "The Bell 429 is a perfect fit


for the development of pilot and crew skills to make the transition to fleet aircraft. Its modern avion- ics, cabin size and speed will serve the Royal Australian Navy and Raytheon Australia well in this role. Not to mention the Bell 429 is backed by Bell Helicopter’s industry-leading customer sup- port and service," he added. Bell Helicopter has supported


the Australian Defense Force for more than 50 years, through the sale and support of the Bell 47 Sioux, the Bell 206 Kiowa and Bell UH-1 family of helicopters – and now the Bell 429. ◆


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Kiowa Warriors on time and on budget is an enormous accom- plishment,” said COL Robert Grigsby, Army’s Armed Scout Helicopter project manager. “This feat is a true reflection of the Army-Bell Helicopter partnership that we have in place. The Kiowa Warrior continues to be a combat multiplier in the Joint Operations Area and SEP was needed to pro- vide safety enhancements and standardize fleet configuration," Grigsby commented. SEP is part of the Army Scout refreshment program. Under this program, deliveries began in January 1999 and finished the last aircraft in September 2011. There have been a total of 283 aircraft, with an additional nine trainers


completed on the SEP line. “We are very proud to be deliv-


ering the final Kiowa Warrior to the Army on contract schedule,” said Amy Tedford, from the Bell Helicopter program office. “This program is critical in getting the Kiowa Warrior back to its author- ized acquisition objective, allowing the aircraft to continue its job as the armed scout workhorse,” Tedford added. “The SEP program finished


strong, having never missed a beat for our customer,” said Jim Schultz, Director for Army Programs and Fielded Systems at Bell Helicopter. “Our next task is working with the Army on identi- fying future Kiowa Warrior needs. Bell Helicopter is currently on contract to build A2D War Replacement Cabins and is ready to respond to a requirement to build ‘new metal’ cabins that would further replace wartime losses and reduce overall fleet age,” Schultz said. With more than 750,000 fleet


combat hours, the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior is a combat-proven air- craft that is safe, rugged and reli- able, maintaining the highest operational tempo and readiness rate of any Army helicopter oper- ating in Afghanistan and Iraq. ◆


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