• Airbus has formed Team Nightjar to respond to the Special Ops helicopter requirement.
    Airbus has formed Team Nightjar to respond to the Special Ops helicopter requirement. Defence

Airbus Helicopters grouped over 20 Australian partners to form Team Nightjar, as the consortium launches its solution to Land 2097 Phase 4, which is seeking a fleet of helicopters to support Special Operations.

The Team Nightjar members include: Cablex, Cyborg Dynamics, Deakin University, DEWC, ECLIPS, Ferra Engineering, Helicopter Logistics, Helimods, Kinetic Fighting, Kratos Australia, Microflite, PREDICT Australia, QinetiQ Australia, Safran Helicopter Engines Australia, Seeing Machines, Sigma Bravo, Rusada, TAFE NSW, Tagai Management Consultants, Toll Helicopters, University of Technology Sydney, Varley Group and Varley Rafael Australia.

In response to the request for proposal for a four-tonne class, rapidly deployable, multi-role helicopter for the Special Forces, Team Nightjar will be offering a fleet of Airbus H145M and in-country support.

“We recognise the importance of working with Australian companies on this programme, with each partner offering niche capabilities to the Commonwealth. Building on our established commitment to Australian industry, Team Nightjar will have a strong focus on Australian industrial support and innovation,” Andrew Mathewson, Managing Director of Airbus Australia Pacific, said.

The local consortium says it will deliver “world leading training solutions, empower indigenous participation, and enable rapid design and delivery of enhancements throughout the program’s lifetime.”

It also says the teaming proposal will generate over “$250 million of economic benefits and more than 170 Australian jobs.”

Australia’s smallest nocturnal bird of prey, the nightjar’s characteristics include agility, stealth through its compact size, excellent camouflage, silence in flight and non-reflective eyes. The nightjar is known to hunt in pairs and catch prey on the wing, combining its heightened senses, agility, speed, power and focus – hence its adoption by the Airbus consortium.

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