Thursday 19 Jul 2018 | 00:57 | SYDNEY
Thursday 19 Jul 2018 | 00:57 | SYDNEY

Defence may need to recruit some used car salesmen


Sam Roggeveen


22 July 2008 15:59

It looks like The Netherlands is reliving Australia's Seasprite helicopter debacle with its new NH-90 naval helicopter. It all sounds so familiar: spiraling costs and delays in mission systems mean that existing platforms have to be upgraded at huge expense. Politicians ask if the contract can be cancelled, and the inevitable reply is that the terms of the contract would make this too expensive.

Besides, where would the Dutch Navy find quick replacements if the NH-90 contract was cancelled? Well, Aviation Week & Space Technology can think of one possibility...

Australia has 11 remanufactured Kaman SH-2G(A) Super Seasprites available for sale, although these have been plagued with cockpit and mission systems avionics integration problems (the reason why Australia decided to cancel the SH-2G(A) program).

To heap irony upon irony, Australia is also procuring dozens of NH-90 helicopters for the Army and Navy, though I'm pretty sure these are not the version that Holland is having so much trouble with.