Tag Archives: AS365

Lithuania introduces new SAR choppers

Lithuania on Thursday 14 January celebrated the entry into service of the new Airbus Helicopters AS365 N3+ helicopters for search and rescue (SAR) duties. The new choppers, three of which have been ordered, are available for duty 24/7.

The Baltic country ordered the helicopters are replacement for ageing, Soviet era Mil Mi-8 Hip helos. Following the first two deliveries in June and September 2015, air force pilots, rescue workers and technicians underwent a full training program, including the use of a full flight simulator. The final chopper arrived in-country last month.

The three AS365 N3+ SAR helicopters are fully equipped with the latest technologies such as forward looking infrared (FLIR), radar, search lights, hailer, hoist, and stretchers. The full glass cockpit and 4-axis autopilot with SAR modes significantly decrease the crew workload, allowing them to perform their demanding missions safely.

© 2016 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image: The new Lithuanian Air Force SAR Dauphin (Image © Airbus Helicopters)

Recap: defense orders at Paris Air Show

UPDATED 19 June | As always its the orders for airliners that fight for attention at the Paris Air Show, but on the military side, things are happening as well. Most interesting little fact was the apparent first export order – announced on Monday – for the Pakistan-made JF-17 Thunder, although no country was mentioned. Let’s not be surprised however when it turns out to be Myanmar.

Pakistan Air Force officials only described the country that soon may add the JF-17 to its military inventory, as ‘Asian’. The same officials reported that current turmoil in the Middle East has slowed down export talks. The JF-17’s development meanwhile continues, with a possible two seat version on the way.

On the slower spectrum, Mali and Ghana agreed to buy six and five A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft respectively, while Saudi Arabia signed for four Airbus C295W medium transport and patrol aircraft. Perhaps the most prominent deal was the purchase of four Boeing C-17s for the Qatar Emiri Air Force.

As far as helicopters are concerned, Malaysia placed an order with Airbus Helicopters for two AS365 Dauphins for SAR duties.

Unnoticed by many was the first sale for Aero Vodochody of its new L-39NG aircraft. More on that is here.

Dassault’s Rafale was the most numerous aircraft. Three Rafales were on the ground, while a fourth gave a flying display. In the trade halls, models of Rafales in the colours of Qatar, India and Egypt were seen. Given the recent orders from those countries, further Rafale sales are unlikely.

Also in the halls, Alenia Aermacchi was pitching its M-345 jet trainer. France is reportedly interested in this trainer aircraft. Elsewhere, Antonov was pitching its new An178 transporter. The Ukrainian company also announced the An188, a military transport aircraft in the A400M and Boeing C-17 category, powered by four turbofan engines.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image (top): Caught by its tail: a Black Panther’s JF-17 from Pakistan. (Image © Dennis Spronk)

Lithuanian Air Force’s first Dauphin

The Lithuanian Air Force received its first of three Airbus Helicopters (Aérospatiale / Eurocopter) AS365N3+ Dauphins on 2 June 2015. Before the end of the year the new search and rescue / environmental patrol asset is expected to number all three machines.

Russian-made Mil Mi-8 Hip choppers will be replaced with the new Western European helicopter already operational with many of the world’s armed force and SAR services. The main task of the Dauphins is civil and military SAR, including missions supporting NATO’s Baltic Air Policing mission. The latter meaning the rescue of fighter jocks of NATO’s combat aircraft in case they eject from their planes in case of an emergency.

The Lithuanian Ministry of Environment, which co-purchased the machines with the Ministry of Defence, gets 75 flight hours on the Dauphins a year, for environmental observation and control. The AS365s are also to deploy as fire-fighters and to transport organs for transplantation.

The Lithuanian Armed Forces signed the procurement contract with Eurocopter (now Airbus Helicopters) on the three Eurocopter AS365N3+ Dauphins in October 2013, for about 52 million euro including the training of pilots.

The Dauphins are equipped with a weather/SAR radar, infrared sensors, searchlight, an autopilot and other equipment to make recovery of people possible about 125 miles (200 km) from the take-off point possible. The Lithuanian Armed Forces have SAR detachments at Kaunas-Aleksotas in the south of the country and at Nemirseta on the Baltic Sea coast in the west.

Source: Ministry of National Defence Republic of Lithuania

The first of three AS365N3+ Dauphins arrive in Lithuania on 2 June 2015 (Image © Lithuanian Ministry of Defence)
The first of three AS365N3+ Dauphins arrive in Lithuania on 2 June 2015 (Image © Lithuanian Ministry of Defence)

Taiwan secures availability of its disaster relief Dauphins

Taiwan has secured the operational availability of its fleet of 10 Aérospatiale designed AS365 Dauphin helicopters for the next five years. Taipei has chosen Airbus Helicopters – the current marketeer/manufacturer of the Dauphin – for a so-called full fleet management for 54,5 million Euros.

The Dauphin is popular within the Japan National Police and flies for regional units (Image © Chikako Hirano / Airbus Helicopters)
RELATED POST: Japan’s law & rescue sector chooses more Dauphins
The National Airborne Services Corps of Republic of China (Taiwan) Interior Ministry is operating the 10 Dauphins in the search and rescue, disaster relief, emergency medical services (HEMS), transportation, monitoring, reconnaissance and patrol role. The NASC’s AS365s are based at Taipei-SongShan, Taichung and Kaohsiung-Hsia Kong.

Key in deal is that Airbus performs not only all maintenance on the choppers, but also provides so-called end-to-end logistics. In other words, the NASC personnel should only worry about its real mission: providing chopper service for those in need.

The NASC was formed in March 2004 as a merger between police, fire fighting and coast guard units. Besides the Dauphins, the NASC operates 20 Bell UH-1H “Huey” choppers, two Sikorsky S-76Bs, three Chinooks (civilian model B-234 of the CH-47), a Beechcraft 200 Super King Air (BE-200) and a Beechcraft 350 King Air (BE-350). Apart from the three Fleet Stations where the Dauphins are based, the NASC air assets also fly from Fleet Stations Hualien, Tainan and Taitung.

Sources: Airbus Helicopters / NASC
Featured image: One of 10 AS365 Dauphin helicopters operated by the Republic of China National Airborne Service Corps
(Image © NASC)

Japan’s law & rescue sector chooses more Dauphins

The Dauphin – designed by Aérospatiale and currently part of Airbus Helicopters – is a quite a popular helicopter within authority aviation wings in Japan. The Japan National Police Agency signed up for more on 31 March 2015.

One H155 (EC155) will go to the Kagawa Prefectural Police, while an AS365 N3+ variant has been ordered for the Fukuoka Prefectural Police. Both Dauphins are scheduled to be delivered in 2017, and will replace aging aircraft in these operators’ respective fleets. The H155 is Kagawa Prefectural Police’s first Airbus Helicopters-built rotorcraft.

This month’s three Dauphin deliveries in Japan involved an H155 for the Hyogo Prefectural Police, one AS365 N3+ received by the Hiroshima Prefectural Police, and an AS365 N3+ for the Nagoya City Fire Department.

Currently, a total of 56 Dauphin helicopters are operated in Japan – including three H155s and six AS365s deployed by Japanese police agencies, as well as 24 AS365s flown in firefighting and disaster relief missions.

The medium-sized twin-engine Dauphin incorporates the Fenestron shrouded tail rotor, that makes operations safer for people on the ground than the tail rotors that turn around “out in the open”. The Dauphin’s cabin can accommodate up to 13 passengers, flown by a crew of two.

Source: Airbus Helicopters
Featured image: The Dauphin is popular within the Japan National Police and flies for regional units (Image © Chikako Hirano / Airbus Helicopters)