First Belgian NH 90 TTH at Beauvechain Airbase
In a ceremony organised at Beauvechain airbase on Friday 19 July 2013 the first NH Industries NH90 TTH has been presented to the Belgian press in presence of Minisiter of Defence Pieter De Crem (CD&V) and the Belgian Chief of Defence General Van Caelenberge. Having accumulated a delay of more than a year the arrival of the NH90 helicopter in its tactical transport (TTH) and naval (including search & rescue)(NFH) versions is more than eagerly awaited by the Belgian Air Force. The first TTH registered RN05 was on visit from France at Beauvechain airbase in relation with the 21st of July National day and crowning of the new King Filip. The helicopter will take part in the air parade on that day. After that it return to Le Luc airbase in Southern France where it helps training flying crews.
To insure interoperability and ease of mutual maintenance the Belgian TTH (Tactical Transport Helicopter) is very similar to the 34 NH90 "Cayman" (with an additional 34 on option) in process of being delivered to the French Army Aviation (ALAT).
In Belgian Air Force service the main tasks of the TTH version will be:
- Support to a battle group
- Support to the Nation & International Aid.
The NFH (Nato Frigate Helicopter) will be close to the NFH operated by the Dutch Koninklijke Marine and in Belgian service will have as main tasks:
- Search and Rescue missions (in replacement of the venerable Westland Sea King)
- Support to the M-Frigates.
Actual situation of the Belgian NH90 helicopters:
RN05 (TBEA01), the first Belgian TTH was delivered in December 2012 and is in the final face of training pilots and crewmembers. Arrival in Belgium is expected in September 2013. The helicopter has flown 86 hours (20 hours production testing and 66 hours pilot training).
RN01 (NBEN01), the first Belgian NFH is to be handed over on July 31st, 2013. On august 13th, the aircraft will be ferried to Marignane in France to insure training of crews and technicians. This training phase will be complete in April 2014. RN01 has flown some 25 hours to date.
The twin-engine, medium-size NH90 helicopter program is managed by the consortium NHIndustries, the Company owned by AgustaWestland SpA (32%), Eurocopter (62.5%), and Stork Fokker (5.5%).
A photographic overview:
The state of the art full glass cockpit with 4 multi-function displays and stand-by instruments of NH90 TTH RN05.
© Daniel Brackx (July 2013)
Last updated 07/11/11 10:59 Daniel Brackx