Leonardo Helicopters recently delivered the first of 130 TH-73A training helicopters assembled at the company’s Northeast Philadelphia Airport (PNE) facility to the U.S. Navy. The keys to the aircraft were presented to Vice Admiral Kenneth Whitesell, commander of Naval Air Forces and Commander, Naval Air Force U.S. Pacific Fleet, at a ceremony held at Leonardo’s PNE hangar.
The TH-73A fleet, which will replace the TH-57B/C Sea Rangers, will be used to train Student Naval Aviators at Naval Air Station (NAS) Whiting Field in Milton, Florida. NAS Whiting Field is the training facility for U.S. Navy, Marines and Coast Guard student helicopter pilots and several NATO-allied nations. Leonardo was awarded the initial contract for the aircraft in January 2020. The U.S. Department of Defense exercised its options for 36 additional helicopters in November 2020. Delivery will continue through 2024. Leonardo is also constructing a customer support and maintenance services center across the runway at NAS Whiting Field airfield.
Leonardo, one of the world’s top ten players in Aerospace, Defense and Security, delivering cutting-edge and dual-use technologies to governments, institutions and private customers, has been a tenant at PNE for 40 years. The company employs almost 900 at the PNE facility, including almost 100 veterans.