Leonardo Helicopters Leader of the Turkish Commercial Helicopter Market

Leonardo Helicopters (formerly known as AgustaWestland/AW), one of the world`s leading commercial and military helicopter manufacturers, hosted our magazine on its facility, to provide firsthand information about its numerous activities, including commercial and military rotary-wing product range, Customer Support and Training Services tailored to customer needs and supported by digital, synthetic, and virtual/augmented reality capabilities, Simulation Training Center, its performance in 2023, ongoing projects in Türkiye, and future goals. During the visit, they also introduced the Leonardo Training Academy in Sesto Calende, the Final Assembly and Flight Lines in Vergiate, and the Cascina Costa facilities near Milan.

Date: Issue 130 - May 2024 Update: June 21, 2024

I had the opportunity to visit Leonardo Helicopters' Training Academy located in Sesto Calende in Northern Italy and its facilities in Vergiate and Cascina Costa for the first time during the press tour held between May 26-28, 2014. With this latest visit, I observed firsthand how the company has undergone a technological transformation over the past decade and to what extent it has incorporated digital and virtual reality technologies into the design, production, and user technical support infrastructure, as well as the training system.

As part of the event, on the morning of January 29, 2024, we visited the Leonardo Training Academy (Alessandro Marchetti Training Academy) located in Sesto Calende and received information from Paolo PETROSSO, VP of Simulation and Training Services at Leonardo Helicopters, regarding the Customer Support and Training Services provided by the company. Additionally, we were informed about the training simulators (new Virtual and Extended Reality Simulator [VxR] with motion system and representing AW119Kx IFR variant and MITHOS [Modular Interactive Trainer for Helicopter Operators]) used at the Academy and the new engineering support services called 'Digital Customer Experience,' which are provided by Leonardo Helicopters within a historical building, on a 24/7 basis, to the customers upon request. We toured the Final Assembly and Flight Lines of Leonardo Helicopters in Vergiate in the afternoon. Leonardo utilizes digital manufacturing technologies at Final Assembly line in Vergiate. Due to confidentiality, we weren't allowed to take photographs at the facility, where tests are conducted for the production, assembly, and acceptance of military and civilian helicopters. We also saw the last batch of AW119Kx Next Generation Basic Training Helicopters of the Turkish Army Aviation School Command at the Final Assembly and Flight Lines. Deliveries of these three AW119Kx Helicopters are expected to be completed in April 2024. In Vergiate, as Defence Turkey Magazine, we also had the opportunity to experience an exclusive 30-minute flight over the picturesque city of Vergiate, renowned for its natural beauty, and the breathtaking Swiss Alps, accompanied by the stunning lake view, aboard the AW189 Helicopter offered by Leonardo Helicopters for both the VIP/Utility and Energy sectors in Türkiye’s civil helicopter market.