Boeing Receives $477 Million Performance Based Logistics Contract from Defense Logistics Agency

martes, 13 de octubre de 2020


Leonardo and ENAV join forces to develop innovative solutions for a more efficient use of helicopters in the civil air space which focus on digitalization, sustainability and safety

 press release

  • The two partners will work at developing solutions, procedures, and standards to enhance the use of air space in Italy and overseas
  • The collaboration marks an important step forward for the evolution and the modernisation of air navigation infrastructures for transport services, public services and environment protection    
  • Leonardo helicopters’ innovative technological features based on greater navigation, approach and landing precision, particularly in harsh weather conditions, are the ideal solution for the satellite navigation procedures developed by ENAV  


Leonardo and ENAV signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) in Italy primarily aimed at modernising and making safer, efficient and sustainable the use of helicopters and air space leveraging the most advanced navigation technologies. The aim of the partners is to join forces and offer helicopter operators products and services in the advanced instrument navigation field, while also contributing to modernise the relevant infrastructures. The partners are extremely committed to strengthen a major national resource.

Through the LoI this innovative collaboration combines Leonardo’s industrial capabilities for design, production, supply and support of modern, high performance helicopters together with ENAV’s expertise in the development and management of air space in Italy and overseas.

The agreement will allow the partners to develop and supply advanced integrated solutions for both private and public service operators, in Italy and internationally. This collaboration marks a unique initiative in the world’s aviation sector and also contributes to Italy’s critical infrastructures sustainability, digitalization and safety objectives, with both partners as major stakeholders.

Today the air navigation infrastructures, particularly procedures and air space development, are designed mainly to support fixed-wing aircraft flight operations, limiting rotary-wing aircraft’s potential and versatility. Helicopters inherently feature great flexibility and a higher degree of freedom in manoeuvrability, primarily based on vertical take-off and landing and hover capabilities.

The latest certification standard of Leonardo helicopters, with its advanced systems and equipment, already allows the use of modern Performance Based Navigation (PBN) navigation procedures, and ENAV has already been at the forefront of design PBN procedures for both fix- and rotary-wing aircraft for years.

PBN procedures, carried out through advanced satellite navigation, significantly contribute to air space optimisation delivering greater flight operation safety thanks to greater navigation, approach and landing precision and accuracy, a key enabler particularly in certain weather conditions. PBN is combined or replaces the more traditional land-based radio navigation systems

Moreover, PBN procedures ensure a reduction in polluting emissions and noise through dedicated routes and higher efficiency. Passenger transport, emergency medical service and rescue, disaster relief operations, surveillance and fire-fighting are among the main applications which can benefit from this technology, in all-weather conditions, day and night. Its adoption and implementation significantly enhance flight safety, environment protection, public service flexibility, responsiveness and effectiveness, air transport efficiency.

Alessandro Profumo, Chief Executive Officer of Leonardo, said: “With this initiative we confirm our commitment to contribute to Italy’s growth and competitiveness by strengthening a critical infrastructure like our sky as well as the systems and rules regulating its use. We do this by introducing innovation, digitalization and procedures which will come closer and closer to the future ‘urban air mobility’ scenarios, thanks to the continuous modernisation in the field of integration with our expertise in helicopters and the relevant flight safety enabling technologies, air traffic control systems and space technologies. An integrated solution delivering benefits for mobility, safety, environment protection and services for the communities. Italy, with its industrial and technological excellence, confirms its contribution to the efforts made by Europe in this sector with programmes like SESAR and can become a benchmark at an international level.”

Paolo Simioni, Chief Executive Officer of ENAV, said: “We’re proud of this agreement which shows aviation industry’s ability to create synergies aimed at helping our sector grow and contributing to modernize systems which make flight more efficient and safer. Air space is a prime infrastructure for the Italian and international economy growth. Therefore, we’re investing in technological innovation which must also be sustainable and support the environment. Leonardo and ENAV are two strategic players for the technological and infrastructural development of this sector and this partnership provides further evidence of the technological excellent and quality of ENAV’s people. I’m confident that this collaboration will provide both partners with a competitive advantage in the international market.”


Leonardo: panels for JUICE solar arrays leave the Company’s Milan plant, they are the largest ever built for an interplanetary mission

 press release

  • Another record for Leonardo, after the milestone of the photovoltaic panels built for the Rosetta mission
  • Ten panels will accompany JUICE’s probe to discover possible oceans hidden under the surface of Jupiter's icy moons
  • Photovoltaic panels represent one of Leonardo's key abilities, which confirms its leadership in the development of complex technologies for space missions

The ten photovoltaic panels for the JUICE mission (JUpiter ICy moons Explorer) are ready. JUICE is the most ambitious mission of the Cosmic Vision space programme of the European Space Agency (ESA), for which the Italian Space Agency (ASI) participates with an important contribution. Airbus, as the prime contractor, is developing and building the JUICE spacecraft. Leonardo will deliver the panels to Airbus Defence and Space Netherlands, which is developing the solar arrays for the interplanetary mission. Even during the COVID-19 emergency, Leonardo guaranteed the continuity of its activities, respecting the timeline of the supply.

With the production of the JUICE photovoltaic panels, Leonardo not only confirms, but exceeds its technological leadership which was previously achieved with the Rosetta mission. JUICE’s panels cover a total area of 85 square meters, becoming the largest ever built for an interplanetary mission.

JUICE, scheduled to launch in 2022, will study Jupiter and its three icy moons - Ganymede, Callisto, and Europa – which are considered to be of great interest due to the presence of vast oceans beneath their surface. The surface and inner layers will be explored in search of conditions favorable to life.

To reach Jupiter, JUICE’s journey will take almost eight years during which the solar panels will guarantee the energy necessary for the on-board instrumentation. At its destination, the probe will be about 780 million km away from the Sun, and will have to operate in extremely critical conditions.

Jupiter’s distance represented a challenge that required the study and implementation of specific and optimised technologies which are able to operate with temperatures as low as -230 degrees Celsius and in conditions of almost no light (about one twenty-seventh of that arriving on Earth). The constant generation of power is in fact an essential requirement without which the mission would not survive, failing all its objectives.

For the JUICE mission, in addition to supplying the photovoltaic panels, Leonardo participates in the production of the JANUS optical telescope and the MAJIS infrared spectrometer, both highly technological scientific instruments of great importance to the mission. JANUS is developed under the responsibility of ASI with the contribution and scientific guidance of INAF (National Institute for Astrophysics). MAJIS is developed by the French institute IAS and funded by CNES and ASI.

Activities continue at the Nerviano plant (Milan) with the construction of the photovoltaic panels of the European Service Module that ESA will provide to the Orion shuttle – as a contribution to NASA’s ARTEMIS programme for the safe return of man on the moon.

The European Service Module, powered by Leonardo's photovoltaic systems, will transport the Orion capsule, guaranteeing the astronauts housed inside the shuttle a safe and comfortable journey.

Leonardo has already provided the panels for the first two missions of the ARTEMIS programme, scheduled for 2021 and 2023, which aim to verify and test the complex integrated transport system between the Earth and the Moon.

Furthermore, activities for the solar panels of the third ARTEMIS mission have just begun, the launch of which is scheduled for 2024, and it will bring the next man and first woman back to the lunar soil, more than half a century after the historic 1969 landing.

Leonardo has over ten years of expertise in the field of photovoltaic generators and power units, developed by participating in numerous international missions such as: Herschel, Planck, Lisa Pathfinder, GAIA, Aeolus, COSMO-SkyMed, Euclid, ExoMars TGO, Exomars 2022, Meteosat Third Generation, MetOp Second Generation.


ANGELS, France's first industrial nanosatellite, extends the scope of space Internet of Things

 press release

Five times more powerful and ten times smaller than its predecessors, ANGELS has been designed to address the current challenges of New Space: miniaturization, scaled-up performance and very low consumption.

This technological wonder is opening up its services to current users and offering IoT players premium access to this new connectivity. ANGELS gives a first taste of the opportunities provided by Kinéis, the first constellation of European nanosatellites dedicated to IoT. Carrying a state-of-the-art ARGOS instrument, ANGELS is the operationnal proof of the success of the French nanosatellite sector, supported by CNES and leading manufacturers such as Thales Alenia Space, HEMERIA and Syrlinks.


Technology offering a five-time performance increase and greater service capability
ANGELS is so sensitive that transmitters on the ground can reach it with a transmission power of just 100 mW, about a fifth of the power needed by current ARGOS transmitters. It also provides access to a new frequency band, boosting the capabilities of the seven satellites in the current system. These major innovations will enable users to extend the battery life of their transmitters and reduce their size and weight. Data from the 20,000 transmitters are currently processed by the whole system, a figure that will increase to several million by 2030. For biologists, who have been using the ARGOS system with CLS for more than 40 years, this means that their studies can last longer and can include new, smaller species through suitably miniaturized transmitters.


The addition of ANGELS (ARGOS Neo on a Generic Economical and Light Satellite)  to the ARGOS satellite fleet, a world reference in the collection of transmitter data for the study and protection of the environment, offers new data collection capabilities. The ARGOS Neo instrument is the first of a new generation: this technological wonder has passed the challenge of miniaturization by being ten times lighter (2 kg) and three times more energy-efficient than previous generations.

All the innovations developed on board of the satellite in orbit has immediate benefits for users. In practical terms, this new instrument allows the transmitters to become smaller and lighter, which opens up the range of objects inside which they can be fitted. While the ANGELS model already offers exceptional performance, the 25 similar nanosatellites of the future constellation will meet even more demanding specifications,


explains Alexandre Tisserant, CEO of Kinéis.

For Caroline Laurent, CNES's Director of Orbital Systems,

The opening of new services and the inclusion of ANGELS in the ARGOS satellite fleet represent a new milestone in the ARGOS system success story. This was made possible thanks to the unique partnership between CNES, Thales Alenia Space, Syrlinks and HEMERIA. ANGELS is the symbol of French New Space: innovative working methods in action. Designed, developed, manufactured and qualified in record time, ANGELS announces the starting point for the marketing of a range of nanosatellites weighing less than 50 kg. It is carrying ARGOS Neo, itself the precursor of a new generation of low-cost, highly miniaturized instruments.


Benoit Broudy, Vice President  of the Navigation business at Thales Alenia Space in France, says:

We are proud to have supplied the ARGOS Neo instrument, and of its successful commissioning on ANGELS. It represents an important milestone in Thales Alenia Space's New Space and innovation approach. The ARGOS system is the global benchmark in satellite location and data collection. Instrument miniaturization offers new spaceflight solutions such as nanosatellite constellations and creates new opportunities in satellite navigation and the Internet of Things. We are happy to share the success of the ANGELS mission, which should spur the development of a French nanosatellite sector to address the booming New Space market.


Nicolas Multan, CEO of HEMERIA:

I am delighted and proud of the progress made since 2016, a time when questions were being asked about 'how cube- and nanosats can be turned into industrial products with promising performance'. I think we can say that ANGELS clearly demonstrates French know-how in the New Space area, from CNES labs all the way through to the industrial sector, which we are working to unite. This demonstrator, which is now operational, is good news for the constellation of 25 satellites soon to be launched, which will make Kinéis a unique player in tomorrow's IoT world.


Christophe Vassal, President of CLS, provider of ARGOS environmental services:

According to WWF's latest Living Planet Report, populations of vertebrates – fish, birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles – fell by 68% between 1970 and 2016. ANGELS and the forthcoming Kinéis constellation are flying strategic technologies for improving knowledge and protection of biodiversity. ANGELS therefore opens the path to a bright future for wildlife conservation, but also for the sustainable management of marine resources with the monitoring of traditional fishing vessels, or the study of our Blue Planet with the establishment of a digital twin of the ocean. From now on, any sponsor of a project offering connected solutions for the environment can obtain assistance in developing applications. The Kinéis and CLS teams will provide technical and commercial support to all pro-planet players in the creation of novel space applications!


Guy Richard, President and CEO of Syrlinks:

Syrlinks is proud to have taken part in designing the ARGOS Neo miniaturized payload with Thales Alenia Space. We contributed our expertise in space radiocommunications, digital signal processing and software, and our mastery of the New Space system. Syrlinks also provided ARGOS Neo with an ultra-stable reference clock, essential for locating ARGOS transmitters. Developing payloads is fully in line with the company's strategy and allows us to diversify our range of satcom products with more advanced features.


About the partners



Founded in 2019, Kinéis is a satellite operator and a global connectivity provider. It inherited the forty years of CNES and CLS expertise with the Argos system to develop reliable technology that provides easy access to useful satellite data. In order to make life easier for professionals and individuals and to encourage them to use its product and services, Kinéis locates and connects objects wherever they are on the planet. For its first year of existence, Kinéis achieved a turnover of nearly 5 million euros and already employs 40 people.



CNES (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales) is the public establishment responsible for proposing French space policy to the Government and implementing it in Europe. It designs and puts satellites in orbit and invents the space systems of tomorrow; it promotes the emergence of new services that are useful in everyday life. CNES, created in 1961, initiates major space projects, launchers and satellites and is the natural partner of industry for pushing innovation. CNES has nearly 2,500 employees, men and women who are passionate about space, which opens up infinite, innovative fields of application; it intervenes in five areas: the Ariane launcher, scientific research, observation, telecommunications and defence. CNES is a major player in technological innovation, economic development and industrial policy in France. It also establishes scientific partnerships and is involved in numerous international projects. France, represented by CNES, is the main contributor to the European Space Agency (ESA).


Thales Alenia Space

Drawing on over 40 years of experience and a unique combination of skills, expertise and cultures, Thales Alenia Space delivers cost-effective solutions for telecommunications, navigation, Earth observation, environmental management, exploration, science and orbital infrastructures. Governments and private industry alike count on Thales Alenia Space to design satellite-based systems that provide anytime, anywhere connections and positioning, monitor our planet, enhance management of its resources, and explore our Solar System and beyond. Thales Alenia Space sees space as a new horizon, helping to build a better, more sustainable life on Earth. A joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), Thales Alenia Space also teams up with Telespazio to form the parent companies’ Space Alliance, which offers a complete range of services. Thales Alenia Space posted consolidated revenues of approximately 2.15 billion euros in 2019 and has around 7,700 employees in nine countries.



HEMERIA is a major player in the space industry. HEMERIA designs and manufactures first-class space products that meet the needs of corporate and scientific customers in commercial, defence and safety applications. HEMERIA develops high-performance nanosatellites giving non-technical professionals a fast, competitive and efficient access to space. HEMERIA is also one of the top three European suppliers of panels, thermal protections and interconnection devices for bigger satellites.



CLS, a subsidiary of CNES and CNP, is an international company that has been leading the way in Earth observation and monitoring solutions since 1986. Its vision is to design and deploy innovative solutions to enable us to understand and protect our planet and manage its resources in a sustainable way. The company supports the international community in its effort to understand the past, observe the present and prepare for the future. Its resilient solutions provide keys to enable strategic stakeholders to adapt and address the climate and environmental challenges we are facing.
Its systems also make it possible to assess the impact of industrial and economic activities on the environment. CLS employs 720 people at its headquarters in Toulouse and 24 other sites around the world. The company operates in five strategic business sectors: environmental monitoring and climate, sustainable fisheries management, fleet management, energy, mining and infrastructure, and maritime safety.
The CLS Group achieved a turnover of almost 135 million euros in 2019.


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Mi-171A2 certified in South Korea

 press release

Validation of Mi-171A2 certificate confirms the compliance of design with local flight safety requirements and authorizes its use in the Republic of Korea.

"South Korea is the largest foreign operator of the Ka-32 helicopter and also has a successful track record of using Mi-8/17 in police operations. Validation of the Mi-171A2 certificate proves that the country has high demand and trust in Russian helicopter designs. I am confident that our Korean partners will appreciate the outstanding flight performance and modern on-board equipment of Mi-171A2; negotiations about its delivery are already under way", said the Director General of Russian Helicopters Andrey Boginsky.

The first foreign operator of Mi-171A2 was the Republic of Kazakhstan. In addition, its certificate has been validated by the aviation authorities of India and Colombia. Its validation is also planned in China, Brazil, Mexico, Peru and several other countries.

Its modern, high performance VK-2500 engines give Mi-171A2 fundamentally new possibilities for operation in high-mountain and high-temperature regions. Due to its more efficient X-shaped tail rotor, a new main rotor with all-composite blades, and improved aerodynamic profile, the cruise and maximum speeds of Mi-171A2 helicopter are 10 percent higher and its load capacity is 25 percent greater than those of serial Mi-8/17 helicopters.

Mi-171A2 comes with a modern digital "glass cockpit" avionics suite which allows to reduce its crew to two persons. Video cameras provide a better view during external load operations. Its flight safety is improved by modern terrain awareness and warning systems, airborne and obstacle collision avoidance systems.

Depending on the operator needs, Mi-171A2 helicopter can perform search and rescue missions, medical and cargo operations, fight fires or carry passengers in daylight and during night, and at temperatures from -50°C to + 50°C.


Rostec announced the results of the Russian Be-200ES firefighting operations in Turkey

 press release

Over the past three months, the Russian Be-200ES amphibious aircraft flew more than 200 times for suppressing wildland fires in Turkey. Aircraft with Russian crews onboard have been participating in the firefighting missions at difficult and strategically important places and locations since June 16. Total flight time exceeded 400 hours.

Two amphibious aircraft manufactured by the PJSC Taganrog Aviation Scientific-Technical Complex n.a. G.M. Beriev (part of PJSC UAC of the State Corporation Rostec) are currently on duty in the vicinity of Antalya, Izmir and Bodrum. Russian aircraft was involved in dousing flames at a fireworks factory near the city of Sakaria.

It took less than two hours for the crews to localize and completely extinguish the fires there. Another major fire - in the Dardanelles Strait - was stopped in less than a day. Due to that fact, it became possible to avoid disruptions in the movement of ships through the strait. The amphibious aircraft dropped over 300 tons of water on the heart of major fires. The flights were carried out together with the observer pilots from the Turkish side. Amphibious aircraft will remain on duty until October 15.

“Our Be-200ES aircraft completed all the tasks set for firefighting, with more than 4000 tons of water dumped on the burning forest in total. Our crews worked in a difficult fire situation in rugged mountain terrain. Be-200ES filled tanks from the mountain lakes and the open sea, aircraft carried out more than 500 water intakes. The Be-200ES proved themselves as reliable aircraft, highly effective in dousing forest fires,” said the head of the complex brigade of the Beriev Alexander Ternovoy.

Note that the United Aircraft Corporation organized the signing of the Forest fire-fighting service agreement and the aircraft deployment with the assistance of the Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Emergencies Ministry of the Russian Federation, and the active support of the State Corporation Rostec Representative Office in Ankara. A request for assistance in combating forest fires came from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of the Republic of Turkey.

The successful operation of the aircraft in real conditions will allow developing further cooperation with Turkish partners and, as well, discussing the prospects for the purchase of Russian Be-200ES amphibious aircraft to renew the fleet of the Turkish fire service.


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Air Race E Launches Host City Bidding Process for 2022 Races

press release

Air Race E, the global air racing series, is pleased to announce the official bidding process for destinations and venues interested in hosting races during the inaugural Air Race E series scheduled for 2022.

In addition to races in the inaugural series, interested parties can also apply to host qualification events which will act as showcase test events to demonstrate the sport and provide additional exposure for the host venue.

Air Race E founder and CEO Jeff Zaltman said: “This is an important milestone for us and we’re confident the locations we choose will be the perfect destinations for such a moment in history. We’re excited to reveal more and we encourage anyone interested in being a part of the future of electric mobility and green motorsport to get in touch.”

Official Founding Partner Airbus will be one of the main sponsors of the highly anticipated first event as part of its existing agreement signed at the inception of Air Race E in February 2019. The organiser has since entered discussions with a number of other partners looking to get behind the hallmark event in aviation, having recently announced Ansys as its Official Simulation Software Partner.

The bidding process is being managed by Quantum Consultancy, in partnership with Air Race E.


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Kawasaki unmanned compound helicopter first flight


this press release has been automatically translated from japanesse to English with Google translator

Successful flight test of unmanned compound helicopter "K-RACER"

October 06, 2020

Kawasaki Heavy Industries has succeeded in a flight test of the unmanned compound helicopter "K-RACER" at the Taiki-cho Multipurpose Air Park in Hokkaido.

We demonstrated the technology of a conventional helicopter with an unmanned tester aiming at high speed, which is technically limited, and in this test, we were able to confirm stable flight by autonomous control.

This machine is a special type of testing machine called a compound helicopter that has main rotors (4 m in diameter), main wings and propellers on both the left and right sides instead of the tail rotor, and the left and right propellers. Allows the torque associated with the rotation of the main rotor to be canceled and forward thrust to be generated. In addition, in forward flight, the main wing shares the lift, reducing the burden on the main rotor and enabling high-speed flight that cannot be achieved with conventional helicopters.
This machine was developed by the Aerospace Systems Company, and the power source is equipped with the supercharged engine of our motorcycle "Ninja H2R" by the technological synergy of the Motorcycle & Engine Company and the Technology Development Headquarters.

We have many delivery records of various helicopters, including the BK117 helicopter series, which is active as a firefighting / disaster prevention and doctor helicopter.
The results obtained in this test will be utilized for the development of VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) aircraft such as manned / unmanned helicopters and aircraft operation systems linked with various services. While aiming, we will continue to contribute to society through aviation technology, including the realization of the VTOL system in the future.


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