The Harry T. Jensen Award recognizes outstanding contribution to the improvement of reliability, maintainability, safety or logistics support through improved design or technical achievement. Leonardo’s TH-119 certification team, in coordination with Genesys Aerosystems, engineered the first single-engine helicopter approved for instrument flight rules (IFR) in the U.S. since the 1990s.
IFR flight is discernibly safer than visual flight rules (VFR) flight in marginal weather; considering that a majority of helicopters in the U.S. are single engine, it’s hoped that the TH-119 has ushered in change in helicopter safety
Further evidence of its commanding presence, the U.S. Navy in January chose the TH-119 as its next training helicopter in the Advanced Helicopter Training System (AHTS) open competition; the aircraft will be known by the Navy as the TH-73A. The Navy has ordered 32 helicopters with the total procurement expected to reach 130.
The Vertical Flight Society first announced the Leonardo TH-119 certification team’s victory on April 1 and will honor awardees at Forum 76, to be held Oct. 6 to 8 in Virginia Beach, Virginia.