War Tech : Eurocopter brings the AS550 C3 Fennec helicopter to Aero India 2011
The AS550 C3 Fennec recently completed field trials with full mission equipment for the Indian Armed Forces’ reconnaissance and surveillance applications, demonstrating its capabilities as the successor to the country’s existing fleet of Indian-produced Cheetah and Chetak helicopters – both which are based on Eurocopter rotary-wing aircraft.
“We are very happy with the Fennec’s performance during the recent trials, and are confident it is the ideal proposition as the rightful successor to the Cheetah and Chetak,” explained Rainer Farid, the Eurocopter Vice President of Sales for South Asia. “By participating in the key competitive tenders with our best products, we hope to continue to support India in acquiring the right mission equipment and developing a strengthened aerospace industry.”
The military-certified and combat-proven AS550 C3 Fennec has exceptional performance at high altitudes and in hot weather conditions. In addition to operating in Chile’s Andes Mountains at altitudes over 5,000 meters, Fennec helicopters have landed on Mount Everest and the Sziachin glacier in the Himalayas. Last month, a Royal Malaysian Navy Fennec assisted in the rescue of a hijacked Malaysian chemical tanker and its crew, firing on the Somali pirates’ mother ship to keep it at bay.
“The Indian helicopter industry has displayed great potential over the last few years with an annual growth rate of 20 percent,” explained Marie-Agnès Veve, the CEO of Eurocopter India Pvt. Ltd. “Given the country’s expanding economy, its size and challenging terrain – as well as the industrial potential – the future of this industry is very promising. Over the next few years, we hope to become the no. 1 supplier for the civilian, government and parapublic markets in India.”
The Eurocopter’s EC135 in the HEMS (Helicopter Emergency Medical Services will also be introduced in India, The EC135 has a large cabin, rear and slide access for easier stretcher loading, a protected tail rotor and the lowest noise signature in its category.
Also to be displayed will be the AS565 Naval Panther – a version of the Dauphin family, which is well suited for requirements of the Indian Navy and Coast Guard. The Panther is used around the world in a wide range of roles, including combat assault, fire support, anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, search and rescue, and MEDEVAC.
With all the latest equipment and safety standards in all the new war and civil machinery made available in our Country, Soon, our forces should be able to stand up to global standards.