Boeing will begin production on the first batch of 13 MH-139A Grey Wolf helicopters, following the award of a $285 million US Air Force contract for aircraft, sustainment and support services, the company said.
“Advancing the programme from testing and evaluation to production is a major step toward entering the MH-139 into service and providing the US Air Force with additional missile security for decades,” said Azeem Khan, Boeing’s MH-139 programme director. “We are working diligently to begin deliveries next year.”
The MH-139A’s enhanced capabilities allow it to accomplish missions more quickly, quietly and efficiently. With a 50% increase in speed and range, and an increase of 5,000 pounds max gross weight, the aircraft can execute the US Air Force’s mission of protecting intercontinental ballistic missiles across the country. The new type is slated to replace the UH-1N Huey in the service.
The MH-139A team consists of Boeing, as the prime contractor, and Leonardo as an original equipment manufacturer. Leonardo produces the helicopter at its plant in northeast Philadelphia, while Boeing is responsible for military equipment procurement and installation and post-delivery support of the aircraft.
By offering a proven AW-139 platform and integrating additional military capabilities into the MH-139A, the Boeing-Leonardo team provides the US Air Force with the most capable product for the mission.
“My teammates at Leonardo, together with Boeing, are eager to continue our partnership and ensure the success of the MH-139A programme,” said Clyde Woltman, CEO of Leonardo Helicopters US. –ba/mgm/mhi (Pix: via Boeing)