Plan NIGHTJAR - Airbus LAND2097 Phase 4 Light Helicopter for Special Operations Bid

Contact Details

  Abhiney Arora
  +61 7 3364 0692
  +61 7 3364 0780

  Locations: ACT, NSW, NT, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC, WA Australia
  Project Value: $500m
  Project Status: Bid Stage

Project Details


Airbus Australia Pacific is a part of Airbus, a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. With more than 1500 staff across 15 locations in Australia and New Zealand, Airbus Australia Pacific supports 47 MRH90 (NH90 variant) “Taipan” multi-role helicopters for the Australian Army and Navy and 22 ARH “Tiger” armed reconnaissance helicopters for the Army.  The company is the market leader in civilian and parapublic helicopter sales in the region and supports more than 500 civil helicopters directly and through a network of loyalty partners.  Airbus supports the Royal Australian Air Force’s C-130J Hercules, its legacy AP-3C Orion aircraft and replacement P-8 Poseidon reconnaissance aircraft.  In New Zealand, the company has a strategic support contract with the New Zealand Defence Force to support the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s NH90s, C-130s, P-3Cs and SH-2G Sea Sprite fleets as well as the T-6C Texan trainer under subcontract to Textron.  Airbus also provides a range of component MRO services to customers in the region including large aircraft engine and propeller overhaul.  


Defence has stated that it ‘is planning to acquire a fleet of light helicopters to enhance the ADF Special Operations Aviation Capability as advised in the 2016 Defence White Paper. The helicopters are to be proven (already in service) Commercial or Military off the shelf, optimised for operating in dense urban environments, and capable of being rapidly deployed by air transport in ADF Boeing C-17A Globemaster III aircraft. The helicopter should be capable of being fitted with simple, proven, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) equipment and weapons systems’.

In late 2018, Airbus proposed the Airbus H145M helicopter in response to the Commonwealth of Australia (CoA) request for information (RFI) for a four-tonne class, rapidly deployable, multi-role helicopter for Australian Special Forces (Project LAND2097 Phase 4).  The Airbus H145M helicopter is the military version of the H145 – the most advanced member of Airbus’ multi-purpose twin-engine category. It is based on a commercial off-the-shelf platform with military-specific modifications and is an operationally proven, affordable and low-risk option for Australia.


Airbus fully supports the CoA’s AIC objectives.  The Airbus response to the RFI included selected industry partners and the provision of training, maintenance, logistics and engineering activities. A comprehensive transfer of technology and skills will make Airbus Australia Pacific a regional centre able to proactively support Australian operational needs, and export this knowledge back into the wider H145M community.  Airbus is now engaging with local Australian SMEs to seek out products, services and capabilities that will further enhance its response.  Airbus is seeking SMEs engagement along the following themes:

- Develop and expand in country cost effective and enduring maintenance and support capabilities,

- Establish research and development projects, 

- Facilitate SME access to civil and military related business activities, and 

- Create international supply chain opportunities.

Initial project opportunities for SME’s include:

- Role equipment design, manufacture and integration

- Cabin comms and datalink integration

- Operational maintenance services

- Advanced Analytical  solutions and tools

- Training system design and implementation

- Synthetic training solutions

- Packaging and deployment logistics

- Tactical research and development

- Provision of Training services

- Support of in-service GSE

- Design, manufacture GSE

- Test and Certification Activities 

- Ground Systems Support


Airbus is using a process comprising of industry forums and events to promote the opportunity and provide access for SME’s to discuss further.  Airbus will use the ICN email notification system to provide updates to registered organisations.


Airbus is seeking expressions of interest from interested organisations through the ICN Gateway webpage until 11th August 2019.  

The CoA RFT is expected to be issued in fourth quarter 2019.  Future procurement decisions are dependent on CoA contract award.

Work package commencement will vary depending on its nature, while ensuring delivery of systems and support to the CoA from an anticipated year of 2023.


Airbus encourages local industry interested in supplying to the project to register an expression of interest (EOI) through the ICN Gateway webpage.

Information on specific supply opportunities will be communicated on the ICN Gateway project page as it becomes available, with local industry able to register its interest against them.

Please ensure that: 

• Your company profile on the ICN Gateway is complete, up-to-date and accurate including electing to be notified via e-mail of supply opportunities

• You register your interest as a full or partial scope supplier (where applicable), and

• You respond to all project and work package-specific questions.

It is important that businesses submitting an EOI are aware that their submission does not guarantee that they will progress further in the procurement process. Only companies that can demonstrate capability and capacity in accordance with Airbus’ supplier requirements will be invited to pre-qualify for specific opportunities.


Airbus strongly encourages local industry to contact the ICN Queensland in the first instance to improve their understanding of the EOI process.

Airbus’ primary contact is:

Mr Scott White

Industry and Innovation Manager


Work Packages

There are currently no open work packages for this project.
Note: The closing date/s for expressions of interest shown below are subject to change.

Advanced Analytical Solutions and Tools12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Maintenance data analysis, training, object recognition, geospatial, and rapid environmental analysis
Aircraft Painting12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Painting of aircraft livery and internal surfaces over existing primer.
Cabin Communications and Datalink Integration12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Rapid integration of specialist communication equipment
Design and Or Manufacture GSE12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Design and/or manufacture of ground and airborne GSE and specialised tooling/jigs
Ground Systems Support12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Provision of innovative ground software support for pre, during and post mission planning
Operational Maintenance Services12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Provision of on aircraft maintenance including operational and intermediate
Packaging and Deployment Logistics12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Freight forwarding, packaging kits, integrated logistics, bespoke solutions for special operations, air transport (C-17) and deployment on LHDs
Provision of Training Services12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Provision and conduct of aircrew and maintenance training
Role equipment design manufacture and integration12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Provision of rapid protype engineering, manufacture and integration of bespoke technical solutions in response to customer needs
Support of Inservice GSE12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Maintenance, repair and calibration of GSE
Synthetic Training Solutions12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Development and provision of solutions in the conduct of training including maintenance trainers, flight sims, part task trainers, collective trainers and cabin procedural trainers, including innovative solutions
Tactical Research and Development12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Think tank, innovative ideas relating to sensors, systems, procedures etc
Test and Certification Activities12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Support of qualification activities, range coordination, signature and armament characterisation, kinetic effect analysis, EMI/EMC
Training System Design and Implementation12 Jul 1919 Aug 1919 Aug 19
Provision of TNAR, training design, and associated documentation