First NH90 Step B helicopter delivered to Italian Navy
The Italian navy has taken delivery of the first NH90 NATO Frigate Helicopter (NFH) Step B from NHIndustries. The helicopter, delivered on 8 November, will be assigned to the 5th Helicopter Squadron of the Italian Navy at the Sarzana-Luni base.
The Italian Navy will receive 56 NH90 helicopters, 46 of which will be NFH variants. The NFH variant has been designed to meet NATO requirements, and is able to perform a range of missions including anti-submarine warfare, anti- surface warfare, SAR, transport, special ops support, boarding, medical evacuation, maritime reconnaissance and anti-piracy.
The Step B configuration features advancements in mission capability including mission systems integration for both air-to-surface missiles such as the Marte MK/2S and torpedoes, advanced satellite and encrypted communications, radar and avionics capability enhancements.
Five previously delivered Italian Navy NH90NFH in Step A standard will undergo retrofitting to bring them to the final configuration from 2014 onwards.
The Italian Army took delivery of the first NH90 tactical transport helicopter (TTH) in Final Operational Capability configuration in May this year.
More than 164 NH90 helicopters have been delivered and are in service in Germany, France, Belgium, Italy, The Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Greece, Oman, Australia and New Zealand.
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