AW101 117% Programme – DAAA Full Certification Achieved

01 May 2024

Leonardo’s AW101 helicopter has achieved certification of the 117% increased take-off power from the Directorate for Air Armaments and Airworthiness (DAAA) of the Italian Secretariat General of Defence/National Armaments Directorate. The new certification confirmed Leonardo’s test evidence that the engines, control systems, main gearbox (MGB) and flight envelope expansion are approved at a higher MGB torque, up from 112%.

This is the most significant upgrade to the AW101 since the introduction of General Electric CT7 engines to the platform in the mid-2000s.

This marks the final delivery of a substantial Leonardo investment bringing a host of benefits to the AW101: increased take-off payload, radius of operation, ease of flight handling, expanded at-altitude operations, a reduced maintenance burden, safe landing and recovery techniques in the event of an engine failure, and flight envelope expansion enabling the AW101 to take-off and land safely from more challenging places than ever.

Fielded with one customer already and design embodiment underway with a second, other AW101 customers with GE engines can now realise the 117% potential at the mid-life upgrade stage.

Introduction of the 117% to the AW101-612 Norway All Weather Search and Rescue Helicopter (NAWSARH) fleet is a major aspect of Norway Software Suite 9 (SS9), which will commence flight testing on aircraft NOR01 in Q4 this year.

SS9 introduces a myriad of perfective and corrective enhancements, including the joint development with the NAWSARH user community of Human Machine Interface optimisations for operating with 117%.

The first SS9 117% aircraft is contracted for delivery into Norway Q1 2025, with an upgrade to the 15 in-service NAWSARH aircraft starting mid-2025.