Leonardo news in brief

Pratt & Whitney Canada, Léman Aviation Omni Helicopters International

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AW139 Volo SAF
(PHOTO: Leonardo)

Singapore SA2024Leonardo, Pratt & Whitney Canada use SAF on AW139: Leonardo and Pratt & Whitney Canada today announced the successful completion of the first flight for a AW139 intermediate twin helicopter, powered by PT6C-67C engines, using 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF). Accomplished at Leonardo’s facility in Cascina Costa di Samarate (Italy) on 21 November, the 75-minute flight and ground tests evaluated engine performance with multiple power variation and other systems. The test showed an outstanding response to the new fuel with no significant differences compared to the use of Jet A1 fuel. This goal marks a historic first for both Leonardo’s helicopters and the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6 engine family. Earlier this year in-service AW139 helicopters carried out flights with SAF, blended with traditional jet fuel under the current certification standards, in Japan, Malaysia, and most recently UAE. All main civil-certified types within the Leonardo’s helicopter product range are certified for operations using SAF with a blended ratio of up to 50%.

global marketAW09 global market extends to Europe: The number of global partners for the AW09 next-generation single-engine helicopter in the world market has grown with the announcement of the addition of Léman Aviation, who has signed Preliminary Sales Contracts for 10 units. Léman Aviation offers tailored solutions for customers looking for personal and professional management of their private helicopter needs: sales and acquisitions, co-ownership program, helicopter operations and charter management, maintenance, and training. Headquartered in Switzerland and France with a strong presence in Monaco and the French Riviera, Léman Aviation delivers world-class helicopter services at the industry’s highest standards. Léman Aviation joins the consensus around the AW09 programme and market potential as established European distributors of Leonardo helicopters are discussing extending their collaboration and distributorship mandates to include the AW09 in the continent. With this latest achievement, the AW09 world market success extends to Europe following announcements of partnerships and distribution agreements already made in North and Latin America, Africa and Asia in 2023.

OMNI-AW189Leonardo wins order for energy market: The world’s most successful super-medium class helicopter, the AW189, grows its presence further in the energy support market and Latin America with an order placed by leading helicopter operator Omni Helicopters International (OHI) for three units, including two AW189s (powered by General Electric engines) and one AW189K (powered by Safran engines). This latest contract follows a significant Leonardo fleet expansion at OHI, starting with eight AW139 intermediate twins and two AW189 super medium helicopters procured since 2021. It also marks the entry of the AW189K variant into the Latin American market following OHI’s introduction of the AW189 model in this region. The presence of both versions will allow the operator to meet different mission requirements while maintaining the unique combination of efficient long-range, high endurance, and large-capacity operations with lower operating costs compared to larger, heavier types. OHI is focused on providing air mobility solutions to the offshore Oil and Gas sector, as well as Onshore Utility, Unmanned Air Vehicles and Urban Air Mobility. Its customer-first culture has allowed it to grow rapidly alongside discovering new oil reserves in Brazil and Guyana that are increasingly distant from the coast. OHI continues to serve its clients by adapting its fleet to the new context of the market, and this latest order is a further step forward in OHI’s commitment to meet new customer demands, citing sustainability and product reliability benefits. It confirms the strong collaboration with Leonardo to meet its evolving medium to long-range offshore transport mission requirements in South America, where the AW139 is the market leader in its segment, and the AW189 is addressing new requirements for the best combination of performance, technology, safety, emissions, and cost/effectiveness.

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