Citing synergies, Germany chooses NH90 as Sea Lynx successor

After choosing the NHIndustries-developed NH90 to replace its old Sea King search and rescue helicopters, the German Navy now announced that it has picked the NH90 as replacement for the Sea Lynx Mk 88A helicopters.

The navy said the decision to have a single aircraft type adjusted for performing both combat and search and rescue and transport roles would ensure “a smooth transition and synergies in later operations.”

The first search and rescue NH90 variant, the Sea Lion, is scheduled to be delivered this year.

The first frigate helicopter version, to be referred to as the multi-role frigate helicopter (MRFH), is to be delivered in 2025, according to the navy.

At the time of the first MRFH delivery, the German Navy’s Sea Lynx fleet will be over 40 years old. The whole fleet was grounded in 2014 after cracks had been found on the fuselages of 15 of the 22 units. They returned to full operational capability in January 2017.

The NH90 NATO Frigate Helicopter (NH90 NFH) is already flown by the navies of France, Italy, Norway, Belgium and the Netherlands.