AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, is pleased to announce that the Italian Navy has taken today delivery of its 21st AW101 three-engine medium/heavy helicopter during an official ceremony held at Maristaeli Luni naval base in Italy.
This Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW)/Anti-Surface Warfare (ASuW) configured aircraft is the first unit of the last AW101 batch for the service which has committed to a total of 24 AW101s.
The Italian Navy is already operating 8 ASW/ASuW, 4 HEW (helicopter early warning) and 8 amphibious support helicopters. The Italian Navy’s AW101s ASW and HEW variants are amongst the most advanced naval helicopters in service today and have been successfully deployed on overseas operations providing a major contribution to international maritime operations.
The long range and endurance of the AW101 combined with the capabilities of its sensors and onboard processers make it a highly effective naval helicopter.
Recently the Italian Navy supported the G8 Forum in Italy using the AW101 to perform transport for heads of state and government officials. The AW101 was chosen due to its safety, cabin space and comfort.
The maritime variant of the AW101 is in service with the Italian Navy and the UK’s Royal Navy having replaced the Sea King helicopter in a number of ship and shore based roles.
Also the Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF) has chosen the AW101 for Airborne Mine Countermeasures and Antarctic Survey operations designated the MCH101 and the CH101 respectively.
Over 170 AW101 helicopters have been ordered so far by customers worldwide to perform a number of roles.