NHI Industries Seeks Clarifications on Rival Sikorsky’s Performance in Indian Navy Tender
12:00 AM, December 26, 2011
NHI Industries, the manufacturer of the NH90 helicopters and one of the two bidders in the race for the US$1.2 billion Indian Navy Multi Role Helicopter (MRH) contract, has claimed that its rival, Sikorsky’s S70B does not meet a number of parameters as outlined in the Request for Proposal (RFP). Referring to the field evaluation trials (FET) of the two choppers which were completed last month, the company said that against a number of naval staff quality requirements (NSQRs), “it would have been, within the constraints of the FET process, impossible for the S70B to have demonstrated compliance against”. In a letter addressed to Indian MoD officials concerned with the MRH procurement, NH Industries has listed out several parameters where it claims that the Sikorsky S70B does not meet the relevant NSQRs and has sought a meeting with the concerned officials to explain its position. Regarding the specific concerns on which it wants clarifications, NHI has said that one of the NSQRs requires that no failure of a single system should lead to a catastrophic failure. “NHI would like to understand how this has been demonstrated in the case of the S70B as it does not have dual redundancy built in to all aircraft flight control systems.” Referring to another concern, NHI says that one of the NSQRs is for the fitment of both external and internal fuel tanks with all the other mission equipment installed and 2 cabin crew. “Given the small cabin size of the S70B, NHI would like to understand how this was this requirement was demonstrated”. Another area of concern, according to NHI is that the usable fuel reserve of the S70B in anti-submarine mission is less than 4% which is non-complaint in terms of the NSQRs as the need there is for a 15% fuel reserve. Other areas listed include availability of all sensor functions at each operating station in the rear cabin of the S70B.
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