NH90 helicopters are equipped with torpedoes and anti-ship missiles mounted on external weapon pylons. It is capable of performing various combat missions in one takeoff.

The NH90 multi-role helicopter is manufactured by NHIndustries, which is considered to be the most modern naval helicopter line of European countries. It is even considered a century helicopter when equipped with the latest sensor systems, avionics and weapons.

NH90 has been part of NATO’s program to build the most advanced European helicopters to replace UH-1, Puma/Cougar, Lynx, and Sea King helicopters. The helicopter was “conceived” in 1986 with the participation of France, England, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands. NH90 has variants for tactical transport, paratrooper drop and anti-submarine warfare, surveillance and rescue operations. NH90 can be used on frigates or aircraft carriers.

NHIndustries NH90 multi-role helicopter Review

NH90 is made mostly of composite materials, very flexible, easy to control, easy to maintain and low operating costs. Thanks to such features, the NH90 can operate day and night, in all weather and operational conditions. The NH90 cockpit is specially designed to protect the crew of 3 (including pilots, officers controlling weapons systems and technicians) in case the enemy uses weapons of mass destruction, biochemical weapons. The hull has a convex shape and is made of composite material. The helicopter’s four-blade rotor is covered in fine steel made of titanium alloy which is capable of bearing and resisting 12.7 mm bullets.

NH90 not only serves combat capabilities but also has the ability to ensure high safety for the crew.
NH90 not only serves combat capabilities but also has the ability to ensure high safety for the crew.

The helicopter is powered by two General Electric T700-T6E turboshaft engines delivering 2,229 horsepower each. NH90 carries 2,500 kg of fuel allowing the helicopter to operate for a long time in the air. NH90 is equipped with a built-in air-to-air, air-to-ground communication and location system. The friend or foe Identification System TSC 2000 IFF provided by Thales. In addition to the crew, the helicopter could carry an additional 20 people.


NH90 has variants of NH90 TTH - tactical transport, paratrooper drop and NH90 NFH - anti-submarine, reconnaissance and rescue.
NH90 has variants of NH90 TTH – tactical transport, paratrooper drop and NH90 NFH – anti-submarine, reconnaissance and rescue.

The program to build the new helicopter was planned in 1985 with the participation of France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands. The NH90 was developed in response to NATO requirements for a battlefield helicopter which would also be capable of being operated in naval environments. It was developed and is manufactured by NHIndustries, a collaborative company, which is owned by Airbus Helicopters, Leonardo and Fokker Aerostructures. The first prototype conducted its maiden flight in December 1995; the type first entered operational service in 2007. As of July 2019, the NH90 has logged 185,000 flight hours in the armed forces of thirteen nations.

NH-90 can operate at temperatures from -40 to +50 degrees. Therefore it can operate both day and night, in all weather and combat conditions.
NH-90 can operate at temperatures from -40 to +50 degrees. Therefore it can operate both day and night, in all weather and combat conditions.

Versatile and compact, with a length of 19.56m, width of 4.62m and a height of 5.2m, it is small enough to fit in the hangar of a NATO frigate, but with a cabin volume to accommodate 20 fully-equipped troops or more than 2,500kg of cargo. Its wide modular cabin, large sliding doors on each side and a rear ramp make it the most accessible military helicopter available. The modular cabin design allows the operators to perform modifications according to their specific missions and roles. The flight envelope of the NH90 is capable of all-weather day-and-night operations, ship-borne operations during high sea states, in extreme conditions – from the cold arctic to the hot desert, and up to a maximum altitude of 6000m.

NH-90 is one of the rare helicopters equipped with a fly-by-wire system manufactured by Goodrich Actuation and Liebherr Aerospace.
NH-90 is one of the rare helicopters equipped with a fly-by-wire system manufactured by Goodrich Actuation and Liebherr Aerospace.

NH90 has a maximum speed of 300km/h and a range of 800km with internal fuel, it can fly for up to 4.45 hours on internal fuel. The rate of climb of the helicopter is 8m/s, the maximum takeoff weight is 10,600kg. The exhaust gases from the engines are filtered through an infrared suppression system for decreased sensory visibility. According to Airbus Helicopters, the NH90 possesses the lowest radar signature in its class, principally due to its diamond-shaped composite fuselage.

Other electronic systems are provided by Thales Avionics. The display device has 5 8x8 inches LCD screens to display aircraft specifications. The weather radar installed is the Honeywell Primus type 701A. HELLAS laser warning system.
Other electronic systems are provided by Thales Avionics. The display device has 5 8×8 inches LCD screens to display aircraft specifications. The weather radar installed is the Honeywell Primus type 701A. HELLAS laser warning system.

The NH90 features a range of customizable avionics systems, dependent on customer selection and purpose. A pilot and co-pilot can be accommodated in the cockpit. The full glass cockpit is equipped with an integrated avionic suite, advanced controls, a communication suite, and a navigation system. It is also equipped with multifunction displays. Its fly-by-wire controls with four-axis automatic flight control system reduce crew workload. Other mission systems include helmet-mounted sight and display, forward-looking infrared system, weather radar, digital map generator, and an on-board monitoring and diagnostic system.

The NH90 joins the German Navy
The NH90 joins the German Navy

In the NATO frigate helicopter version, the NH90 can be configured with anti-ship missiles, torpedoes and sonobuoys. It can be equipped simultaneously with both an anti-ship missile and a torpedo.

The NH90’s NATO frigate helicopter version is a ship-based compact maritime helicopter, one of the primary maritime weapon systems for any surface fleet. Operating from shore or warships in all flyable conditions, the helicopter is tailored for full capability in both anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare. Search and rescue operations can be performed in either of these configurations.

In the role of NATO frigate helicopter, NH90 has fulfilled missions along the East African Coast, in the Persian Gulf, the Indian Ocean, the Caribbean, Mediterranean and northern waters. Its operational versatility and wide range of capabilities make it the most effective naval helicopter available today; it is a true force multiplier and an essential asset for any operation.

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