The Brazilian Air Force is fielding the first helicopter in Latin America equipped with a refueling probe, to receive the necessary stuff in mid-air. The first Airbus Helicopters / Helibras H-36 Caracal with the probe will be fully operational in January 2016.
Brazil hopes that the air-to-air refueling option gives the chopper even better capabilities to perform long-range Search and Rescue options across the vast Brazilian territory stretching far into the Atlantic Ocean and into the Amazon River base.
19 Caracals in Brazilian service
Although not all of the 50 helicopters ordered by the Brazilian Armed Fores are receiving the probe, many or even all of the Força Aérea Brasileira (FAB) will. Designed by Aérospatiale / Eurocopter / Airbus Helicopters (H225, formerly EC725), the choppers are being assembled by Helibras in Itajubá. Of the total number ordered, currently 19 are in service: 5 in the FAB, 5 in the Brazilian Army, 7 in the Brazilian Navy and 2 as presidential flight.
Força Aérea Brasileira H-36
The FAB H-36s will not only receive a probe, but also new warnings systems for radar, laser and missile approach, as well as special electronic counter measures, encrypted communication systems and an infrared camera, the FAB writes in a statement.
2015 Airheadfly.com editor Marcel Burger
Featured image: A H-36 Caracal equipped with a probe (Image © Força Aérea Brasileira)