Air Force Awards Contract for New Helicopter
(Source: Secretary of the Air Force; issued Sept 24, 2018)
The US Air Force has chosen Boeing’s MH-139 to replace its UH-1N helicopters. It is derived from the AgustaWestland AW139, seen here is its Italian SAR version, and came in $1.7 billion under the US Air Force’s budget. (AW photo)
WASHINGTON, D.C. --- Today the Air Force awarded the first portion of a $2.38 billion firm-fixed-price contract to The Boeing Company for a UH-1N Replacement helicopter.

'Strong competition drove down costs for the program, resulting in $1.7 billion in savings to the taxpayer,' said Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson.

The original service cost estimate was $4.1 billion.

Today’s award of approximately $375 million is for the first four helicopters and includes the integration of non-developmental items. This additional equipment integrated into the aircraft will ensure the helicopters are ready to meet warfighter needs upon delivery.

The total program cost for the UH-1N Replacement Program reflects the exercise of all options and provides for the acquisition and sustainment of up to 84 MH-139 helicopters, training devices and associated support equipment to replace the legacy UH-1Ns.

The new helicopter will be an important tool for Airmen charged with securing and defending the nation's intercontinental ballistic missiles. The Air Force will also use the aircraft for training, test and operational support airlift.

The Air Force pursued a full and open competition to deliver increased capabilities to warfighters. This replacement will provide the necessary speed, range, endurance and carrying capacity needed to meet the requirements of five Air Force major commands, officials said.

'A safe, secure and effective nuclear enterprise is job one,' said Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David L. Goldfein. 'It is imperative that we field a capable and effective helicopter to replace UH-1Ns providing security for our ICBMs and nuclear deterrence operations.'

The first operational helicopter delivery is expected in Fiscal Year 2021.


Pentagon Contract Announcement
(Source: US Department of Defense; issued Sept 24, 2018)
The Boeing Co., Ridley Park, Pennsylvania, has been awarded a $375,550,368 firm-fixed-price contract for the non-developmental item integration of four aircraft to replace the UH-1N.

This is the basic award of a contract (including options) valued at approximately $2,380,000,000, which will provide for the acquisition and sustainment of up to 84 MH-139 helicopters, training devices, and associated support equipment.

The location of performance is predominantly in Ridley Park, Pennsylvania; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

If all options are exercised, the work is expected to be completed by September 2031.

This award is a result of a competitive acquisition. Fiscal 2018 research, development, test, and evaluation funds in the amount of $98,000,000 are being obligated at the time of award.

Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity (FA8739-18-C-5030).


Boeing MH-139 to Replace U.S. Air Force UH-1N Huey Fleet
(Source: Boeing Co.; issued Sept. 24, 2018)
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. --- Boeing will provide its MH-139 helicopter and related support to the U.S. Air Force to replace the more than 40-year-old UH-1N 'Huey' helicopters used to protect America’s intercontinental ballistic missile bases.

The program awarded today is valued at $2.4 billion for up to 84 helicopters, training devices and associated support equipment.

'We’re grateful for the Air Force’s confidence in our MH-139 team,' said David Koopersmith, vice president and general manager, Boeing Vertical Lift. 'The MH-139 exceeds mission requirements, it’s also ideal for VIP transport, and it offers the Air Force up to $1 billion in acquisition and lifecycle cost savings.'

The MH-139 derives from the Leonardo AW139, which is used by more than 270 governments, militaries and companies worldwide. Leonardo will assemble the helicopters at its northeast Philadelphia plant, with Boeing integrating military-specific components at its facility south of that city.

The contract also includes operations, maintenance, training systems and support equipment for the MH-139 aircraft.

'We’re proud to provide the U.S. Air Force with solutions across the entire services ecosystem,' said Ed Dolanski, president of U.S. Government Services, Boeing Global Services. 'With the AW139 platform’s more than 2 million flight hours and established supply chain, we look forward to applying our expertise to drive cost savings while supporting mission readiness.'


US Air Force Selects MH-139 Based on the Leonardo AW139 Helicopter
(Source: Leonardo; issued Sept 25, 2018)
-- The MH-139 programme, offered by Boeing as prime contractor, is valued at $2.4 billion for up to 84 helicopters training devices and associated support equipment with initial readiness by 2021

-- Profumo: 'This result is testament to Leonardo’s ability to meet the most stringent requirements of major customers, and a recognition of the Company as a strong, reliable partner and long-established contributor to the US industry'

-- Philadelphia-built aircraft will be operated by the U.S. Air Force to replace their UH-1N Huey fleet leveraging modern technology, high performance and with a savings of $1 billion in acquisition and lifecycle costs over the life of the fleet

-- Over 900 AW139s are already in service among 270 governments, militaries and companies across the world, with 260 assembled and delivered from Philadelphia

ROME --- The United States Air Force (USAF) today selected the MH-139, based on the Leonardo AW139 and offered by Boeing as prime contractor, to replace its fleet of UH-1N 'Huey' helicopters.

The programme awarded today is valued at $2.4 billion for up to 84 helicopters, training devices and associated support equipment. With initial operational capability expected by 2021, the aircraft will take over the role of protecting the nation’s intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) bases and the transportation of U.S. government and security forces.

Alessandro Profumo, Chief Executive Officer, Leonardo said 'We are extremely proud of this outstanding result. Major customers continue to rely on Leonardo to meet the most stringent requirements like the critical mission of protecting missile bases and transporting government personnel and special forces. This selection is also testament to Leonardo as a strong, reliable partner and long-established contributor to the US industry.'

The MH-139 leverages the market-leading Leonardo AW139 baseline, a modern, non-developmental, multi-mission helicopter that is in service worldwide and has already demonstrated its capabilities in protecting critical infrastructures and transporting military and government representatives in various nations.

Gian Piero Cutillo, MD Leonardo Helicopters, said 'Today’s announcement is a strong recognition of the world-class quality and competitiveness of our product to meet the most demanding needs of leading customers.'

The MH-139 is the right-sized aircraft for the mission, exceeds the Air Force’s speed, payload, range, armament and survivability requirements for protecting ICBM bases, and is perfect for VIP transport. The type features modern design and the best level of affordability with a savings of $1 billion in acquisition and lifecycle costs over the life of the fleet.

The AW139 is assembled at the Leonardo northeast Philadelphia plant, with additional components to be integrated into the military MH-139 at the Boeing Philadelphia facility in Ridley Township, Pa.

William Hunt, CEO, AgustaWestland Philadelphia Corporation, said 'We are happy that the U.S. Air Force has selected our team to deliver a new fleet of Philadelphia-built MH-139s. Our Air Force deserves the best tools; this is the right helicopter for their mission. The more than $125M investment made by Leonardo in the Philadelphia facility demonstrates that we are fully prepared to execute in support of this contract. We look forward to working with Boeing on this programme and we’re committed to deliver according to expectations of the prime contractor, the US Government and taxpayers.'


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