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Accordo AgustaWestland - Northrop Grumman


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AgustaWestland si allea con Northrpp Grumman per l’elicottero della Casa Bianca


AgustaWestland (gruppo Finmeccanica) ha firmato un accordo con la statunitense Northrop Grumman Corporation per partecipare alla prossima gara dell’Aeronautica Militare degli USA relativa ad un nuovo elicottero da ricerca e soccorso in combattimento (Combat Rescue Helicopter – CRH) ed alla futura gara per il nuovo elicottero presidenziale Marine One (VXX) di responsabilità della Marina Militare statunitense. La partnership tra AgustaWestland e Northrop Grumman combina la leadership della società elicotteristica di Finmeccanica nel settore dell’ala rotante con la lunga esperienza dell’azienda statunitense nel campo dell’integrazione di sistemi ed equipaggiamenti di missione su velivoli destinati al Dipartimento della Difesa degli USA. “Questo accordo – dichiara il Presidente e Amministratore Delegato di Finmeccanica, Giuseppe Orsi – unitamente alle recenti partnership siglate con la stessa Northrop Grumman sia da SELEX Galileo, nell’ambito del programma della NATO ‘Alliance Ground Surveillance’, sia da SELEX Elsag e Vega, per la fornitura alla NATO di sistemi di Cyber Security, delinea un importante passaggio nel processo di ridefinizione e rafforzamento delle alleanze di Finmeccanica sul mercato statunitense e, quindi, della proiezione internazionale del Gruppo”. L’AW101 si era già aggiudicato nel 2005 la gara per la fornitura di un nuovo elicottero presidenziale statunitense (Marine One), poi annullata per decisione di Barack Obama. L’AW101 è stato già scelto da 14 operatori (tra cui cinque Paesi della Nato), la maggioranza dei quali lo ha già introdotto in servizio anche per compiere missioni di ricerca e soccorso e combattimento nonché di trasporto VIP
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Verrà rieletto quasi sicuramente, l'avversario non mi pare proprio all'altezza.

Piuttosto c'é da sperare nelle entrature (lobbies) di Northrop Grummman presso Usaf e Marines.

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Tempismo ....


Prosecutors Probe Finmeccanica Over Indian Helos ....


Italian magistrates have put Finmeccanica under investigation in connection with a probe into alleged corruption to win a helicopter deal in India, the company said on Friday.




In a statement, Finmeccanica and AgustaWestland denied any wrongdoing, saying they were “completely extraneous” to the alleged crimes.

Fonte .... http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/awx_09_21_2012_p0-498743.xml


Il comunicato .... http://borsa.firstonline.info/NisViewer.ashx?file=0131-83-2012.pdf&year=2012&filetype=comunicati

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  • 1 month later...

The USAF’s New Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH): Aiming for Affordability


Oct 22/12: RFP. The Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition announces the posting of the Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH) RFP to the FBO.gov website, launching the acquisition program. All previous discussions are superseded by the RFP, and a contract isn’t expected until Q4 (summer) 2013.

The Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) contract will develop the system and produce 8 helicopters. It will be a Fixed-Price Incentive Firm (FPIF) contract, with options for 16 more Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) helicopters. The FPIF contract includes a mandatory 11% profit margin at target cost, with another 1% possible if schedule performance meets the criteria. If costs go over that target cost, they’ll be shared 50/50 with the government, reducing contractor profit margins, until 120% (and just 1% profit) is reached. At that point, all further costs belong to the contractor.

Full Rate Production (FRP) options will be Firm Fixed-Price (FFP), and the USAF expects to buy around 85. A small portion of the contract will be a combination of FFP and Cost Plus Fixed Fee (CPFF) in order to cover “over and above” repairs and studies and analyses.

Known competitors to date include Sikorsky/ Lockheed Martin (HH-92), and AgustaWestland/ Northrop Grumman (AW101/ HH-71). Both helicopter types already perform search and rescue roles. Boeing is believed to be examining a bid involving the V-22 tilt-rotor, similar to AFSOC’s existing CV-22s.


ecco alcuni siti web dove vengono diffusi i requisiti richiesti:


Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH)


Air Force releases RFP for next search and rescue helicopter


U.S. Air Force Tries Again for Combat Rescue Helicopter


USAF releases Combat Rescue Helicopter RfP



P.S.: ai moderatori. Ho creato questa discussione per segnalare l'accordo commerciale tra AW e NG, ma adesso che sono stati emessi i requisiti forse sarebbe il caso di aggiornare la discussione focalizzandola sul Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH). O magari aprire una nuova discussione. A voi la decisione.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Pentagon’s Renewed Helicopter Programs Seek Balance Between Affordability And Innovation


Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH). The RFP (request for proposals) has totally revamped the source selection criteria for the CRH in keeping with the drive for affordability. The cost of the program is not to exceed $6.848 billion for development and production of 112 aircraft. The evaluators will also look closely at low operating costs for the CRH. A bidder who exceeds the minimum technical requirements will have his bidding price reduced by a few percent. While described as a best value solicitation, as written, the RFP seems more like a variant of the lowest price, technically acceptable procurements that are becoming common in the services and support area.


The word is that the Navy soon will release a draft RFP for a replacement for the Presidential helicopter. The prior program collapsed under the weight of exploding requirements. Having learned from this experience, the Navy, the White House and the Secret Service are likely to go with reasonable specifications this time around.

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  • 2 weeks later...

New U.S. Presidential Helicopter Program Kicks Off


Lockheed has since announced it will not bid as a prime on a new VXX program, and instead has partnered with Sikorsky to handle systems development. According to the company, Sikorsky intends to offer an aircraft based on its S-92 model.

Other competitors could include Boeing, offering a variant of its H-47 twin-rotor helicopter, and AgustaWestland, partnered with Northrop Grumman on a variant of the AW101 helo.

The draft request, according to Capt. Cate Mueller, “is for the engineering and manufacturing development [EMD] phase of the program, to include three EMD aircraft and four flight test articles, and production options to achieve a total inventory of up to 23 aircraft.”

Issuing the draft document, she said, allows the Navy “to solicit and receive feedback from potential bidders on the specification and the contract terms and conditions before release of the final RFP, scheduled for March 2013.”

The draft, Mueller added, “does not commit the government to any contract or expenditure of funds, but it allows the government to survey the market environment for potential bidders and to refine the final RFP before its release.”

An EMD contract, she said, is expected to be awarded around March 2014.

The contract structure of the VXX program will be for a fixed price incentive-type contract for EMD, and fixed-price type options for low-rate initial production and full rate production.

The Pentagon’s 2013 budget submission shows $1.85 billion for the program over 2013 to 2017, with full production procurement taking place in 2015.

The draft request does not indicate a required unit price for the VXX helicopter.

“That’s the point of competition,” Mueller noted.

The RfP comes roughly a month after the Air Force issued an RFP for the new combat-search-and-rescue helicopter (CSAR), a contract for 112 helos worth up to $6.8 billion. Both the S-92 and AW101 are expected to be solicited for the CSAR competition.


Qui il link a Presidential Helicopter Replacement Program (VXX) Contract

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  • 3 weeks later...

AW e Northrop Grumman hanno deciso di non partecipare alla nuova competizione per l'elicottero CSAR indetta dall'USAF ....


Northrop, AgustaWestland To Skip U.S. Rescue Helicopter Contest ....


Northrop Grumman Corp and Italy’s Finmeccanica SpA have decided not to bid for a multibillion dollar contract to build 112 new combat search and rescue helicopters for the U.S. Air Force, Northrop said on Tuesday.

Fonte .... http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/awx_12_11_2012_p0-527012.xml

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3 Companies Drop Bids for USAF Combat Rescue Helicopter


Interest in the program had been high — representatives from AgustaWestland, Boeing, EADS, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, L-3 Communications and Sikorsky all attended an industry day in September.

Now, less than a month before proposals were due, all but one known competitor have said they will not bid.


... alcune dichiarazioni:


“Boeing and the Bell Boeing Joint Program Office have told the U.S. Air Force that they will not compete the Boeing CH-47 Chinook or the Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey in the Air Force’s Combat Rescue Helicopter competition,” confirmed Boeing spokesman Andrew Lee in a statement.

The company said the two helicopters “exceed the parameters” of the request for proposal (RFP) issued in October. Lee added that Boeing informed the Air Force of their decision “in the last week or two.”


“After carefully evaluating the RFP, we have elected not to submit a bid,” said EADS spokesman James Darcy.


“Northrop Grumman has determined that it will not submit a bid to the U.S. Air Force for the Combat Rescue Helicopter program,” Margaret Mitchell-Jones, Northrop spokeswoman, wrote in an email. “We’ve reached this conclusion based on an extensive evaluation of customer requirements under the current RFP. This decision was made jointly with our teammate AgustaWestland and will have no affect on the team’s pursuit of the U.S. Navy presidential helicopter program.”
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E già si comincia a pensar male .... :hmm:


Northrop Grumman Corp, which was teamed with Italy's Finmeccanica SpA; Boeing Co; Textron's Bell Helicopter unit; and the U.S. unit of Europe's EADS all said they would not compete to build 112 new helicopters for the Air Force, raising questions about whether the contest can proceed as planned.


Industry executives, speaking on background, said the Air Force bidding rules were so narrowly framed that they effectively excluded their aircraft from the competition.

They said the terms favored Sikorsky's Black Hawk helicopter and would not reward extra capability offered by bigger aircraft.

Fonte .... http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/11/us-usa-helicopters-idUSBRE8BA1CY20121211

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Gli Americani sono dunque riusciti a superare loro stessi .... una competizione senza competitori .... o meglio .... con un solo competitore ....


Sikorsky last bidder standing in USAF's combat rescue helicopter battle ....


Sikorsky appears to be the only potential contractor willing to bid for the US Air Force's combat rescue helicopter (CRH) programme.


"Sikorsky intends to continue with its proposal to offer the air force a proven, affordable combat rescue helicopter system to perform the critical mission of saving warfighters' lives," the company says.

Fonte .... http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/sikorsky-last-bidder-standing-in-usafs-combat-rescue-helicopter-battle-380157/


Altre fonti ....


"Ares" .... http://www.aviationweek.com/Blogs.aspx?plckBlogId=Blog:27ec4a53-dcc8-42d0-bd3a-01329aef79a7&plckPostId=Blog%3a27ec4a53-dcc8-42d0-bd3a-01329aef79a7Post%3a1b142d10-e0a8-4d0e-a221-3da1c409e6d1


"Reuters" (via "AW&ST") .... http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/awx_12_12_2012_p0-527943.xml


Mi sto chiedendo se Sikorsky non abbia un asso nella manica .... un certo elicottero "nero" che, un anno e mezzo fa, salì all'onore delle cronache ....



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... un commento, e alcune domande, sulla corsa solitaria di Sikorsky The USAF's emerging preemptive procurement strategy, and the strange case of its CSAR RFP


Andrea Shahal-Esa of Reuters altered us this morning that everyone but Sikorsky, with its updated H-60, has dropped out of the USAF's competition for a new combat search-and-rescue (CSAR) helicopter. Boeing (H-47), Bell-Boeing (V-22), Agusta Westland (AW101), and Eurocopter (EC725) have all concluded, as the article cites unnamed managers, that the terms of the RFP are "so narrowly framed that they effectively excluded their aircraft from consideration." That is, the Air Force Department is requesting an aircraft with more-or-less the latest H-60's performance characteristics, and nothing more. In return, it is offering to pay no more than $6.84 billion for 112 aircraft, or just about $61 million per airplane, all-in. With price basically the sole criterion for selection, it's inconceivable that anything other than an H-60, the smallest aircraft of that bunch, would be a plausible candidate.


In response to the other bidders' general disgust, Air Force spokesman Ed Gulick offered the usual public affairs pabulum: "the Air Force is committed to a fair, open and transparent process to select a new combat search and rescue helicopter that meets the established warfighter requirements at an affordable price for the taxpayer." I would have preferred a statement more like: "the Air Force is committed to buying H-60s from Sikorsky, and wants to chase off the rest of the bidders before they can lodge a protest." For that is what sunk the USAF's intention to buy $15 billion worth of Boeing's H-47s as CSAR machines back in 2009: losing bidders whining to the GAO that the USAF hadn't graded the papers properly.


In 2011, though, the Air Force decided that if it couldn't keep its administrative processes of supplier selection straight in its next big deal, then the best RFP would be one that obviated the need for selection. In the KC-X competition, the department wrote the terms so narrowly that Boeing had an easy time beating Airbus on price, because a 767 is of course going to be cheaper to build and deliver than an A330. Prior to that decision, I had publicly expressed a mild preference for the larger Airbus, as I relatively appreciated its greater fuel and cargo capacity. Those would be useful in the future, I argued, for a future air force with lots of smallish drones, but for which budget constraints would permit fewer dedicated cargo aircraft. At the same time, I had to admit that price would matter: there was a total cost differential beyond which the added capability of the A330 (and its higher operating costs) would not be worth the money. And Boeing's final bid was very impressive: the company will probably make a nickel on those KC-46s, but not much more.


Apparently happy with those results, Air Force has invoked that formula here for buying CSAR aircraft. And frankly, if a given aircraft is what's really what's wanted, and development work should be modest, and the powerful government buyer can demand a known and fixed price, then this approach is reasonable. It economizes on time and money in the so-called bidding process. Sole-sourcing does sometimes make sense; commercial buyers know that as well, so this is not some indulgence by gnomish bureaucrats. In the case of this current CSAR program, however, it bears two fundamental problems.


The first lies with preemptively necking down the competition to an airplane as small as the H-60. It's a fine machine for lots of missions, but when actual CSAR is called for, the H-60 is not generally what gets the call. As I put it just over a year ago,


I have watched at least two NATO air wars now in which the US Marine Corps seems to have had the hammer for CSAR. It's important to note that the Marines don't actually have specialized CSAR units or aircraft. Heck, they don't always have real special operators available. What they do have is long-range rotorcraft and guys who train hard. So, they just grab what's available on the nearest carrier. In Bosnia in 1995, that was a CH-53 and some escorts from the Kearsarge, pulling out an USAF F-16 pilot. In Libya in 2011, it was an MV-22 from (coincidentally) the Kearsarge, pulling out an USAF F-15 crew.


To be fair, and for what it's worth, the USAF did use H-60s to rescue pilots shot down over Kosovo and Serbia in 1999, and its CSAR troops aren't actually with Air Force Special Operations Command. But if USMC long-range rotorcraft sometimes get the nod, it's unclear why they shouldn't always get the nod. The same could be said about Army or Navy or Air Force long-range rotorcraft too.


This gets to the second point: for just what does the USAF need a fleet of 112 CSAR aircraft? Just how many aircrew is the service figuring that it will need to rescue in the next big war? As Assistant Secretary of the Navy John Young commented back in 2011, this fleet has historically been used for "single-digit rescues". Without seeing the missions needs statement, it's hard to know what led to the number 112, but the quantity is easy to criticize, and on the numbers.


For sake of argument, assume that just half that CSAR fleet is available each day on campaign—a reasonable approximation, I think, for a big war that really matters, as in 1991. Send those aircraft in pairs for redundancy, whether that's doctrine or not. Assume that each aircraft could fly not more than once per day—again, hardly a taxing sortie rate in high-intensity combat. Finally, assume that all the downed aviators survive and evade capture and are in a recoverable position, meaning that there's someone actually out there requesting retrieval. This last condition is actually an unrealistically generous assumption for the economics of this project: it demands more CSAR aircraft than would really be demanded. Even so, we then have


112 aircraft x 50% available/day x (sortie/2 aircraft) x (1 lost aircrew/sortie) = 33 lost aircrews per day.


Just what does that figure imply? In line with the 50 percent assumption, figure on the US sending roughly half its total fighter-bomber fleet to a campaign—perhaps 1500 aircraft—and that's a daily loss rate of 2 percent. Without invoking Lanchester's equations, which might actually hold in aerial combat, but figuring instead on just flat constant losses per aircraft employed, a fifteen-day campaign destroys almost one-third of the American air armada. That feels like a modern-day Schweinfurt, but Boeing can't build F-15s as fast as it used to build B-17s, so the USAF would have an ugly loss rate on its hands, and thus bigger problems than rescuing its pilots. The point is that even under these unrealistically generous assumptions, the USAF would only want a fleet of 112 dedicated CSAR aircraft if it was figuring on losing lots of planes in a massive bloody war. The only plausible opponent that could give it that much trouble is China, and in that case, the H-60 hasn't anywhere close to the range needed to recover the aircrews.


So I cannot discern the point of this requirement. Frankly, no other air arm really can either. The next largest fleet of dedicated CSAR aircraft that I can find is the fourteen or so EC725s of the Armée de l'Air, but these have been used heavily in Afghanistan for much more than just CSAR. They're not really purely dedicated to that mission, and the American aircraft cannot reasonably be either. With all this hand-wringing about looming sequestration, and a big fleet of V-22s and H-47s available amongst the Marine Corps, the Air Force, and the Army, the CSAR program looks like an obvious candidate for a vertical cut. And by throwing the competition preemptively to Sikorsky, the Air Force has made that case all the stronger.

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Sikorsky Is Sole Bidder in Helo Contest


Sikorsky appears to be the last company standing in the contest to build the U.S. Air Force’s new combat rescue helicopters (CRHs) after a trio of competitors declined to participate in the program.

EADS North America, Boeing and Northrop Grumman will not submit designs for the contract because they believe they cannot deliver bids under the Air Force’s price cap. This leaves a clear path for Sikorsky to win the contract, expected to be awarded next year.

Although Connecticut-based Sikorsky has not said which design it will submit for the CRH program, Richard Aboulafia, an analyst with the Teal Group, expects the company to move forward with a modified version of its S-92 civil helicopter.


He noted that the CRH is competing for funds against high-profile projects such as the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, KC-46 tanker and new long-range bomber, all of which have been named as priorities by new Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh.

“No new program is safe in this budget environment,” Aboulafia said, and “enablers always take a back seat to shooters.”

Acquisition officials have capped the CRH program at $6.8 billion, meaning any bid above that figure would be automatically disqualified.


The decision by Sikorsky’s competition to not bid on CRH came as a surprise. Interest in the program had been high as the Air Force prepared to issue a request for proposal. Representatives from Agusta-Westland, Boeing, EADS, Lockheed, Northrop, L-3 Communications and Sikorsky attended an industry day in September.


Now, less than a month before proposals are due, Sikorsky stands alone.

A senior defense official, speaking on condition of anonymity, defended the acquisition process.

Alerting companies to monetary requirements helps them make intelligent choices about their bids, the official said. Companies can decide if they truly want to be involved in the competition before spending heavily on a proposal that would not be able to come in under the cost cap.

When asked if the requirements were written with Sikorsky in mind, the official responded that was “absolutely not the case, period. Absolutely not.”

“I don’t want to have pretend competitions,” the official said. “I want to have real competitions.” :hmm:/>


“Boeing and the Bell Boeing Joint Program Office have told the U.S. Air Force that they will not compete the Boeing CH-47 Chinook or the Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey in the Air Force’s Combat Rescue Helicopter competition,” Boeing spokesman Andrew Lee wrote in a statement.

The company said its two helicopters “exceed the parameters” of the request for proposal issued in October.


An EADS spokesman did not go into details as to why his company did not submit a bid.

A statement from Northrop was similar. ... “We’ve reached this conclusion based on an extensive evaluation of customer requirements under the current [request for proposals]. This decision was made jointly with our teammate AgustaWestland and will have no effect on the team’s pursuit of the U.S. Navy presidential helicopter program.”

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