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Airbus Helicopters will be providing an additional four H225M (previously known as the Eurocopter EC725) multirole utility helicopters to the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) as part of their fleet strengthening program. This follow-on order will bring the RTAF's H225M fleet up to 12 units by 2021.
Specially equipped with emergency flotation gear, fast roping, cargo sling, search light and electro-optical systems, these four new multirole H225M helicopters will join RTAF's existing fleet of six H225Ms for combat search and rescue missions, search and rescue flights, and troop transport operations. The air force will also be receiving two H225Ms from its earlier order, by end of this year.
This latest contract will also cover on-site technical support and continuing airworthiness management organization services, fully supported by Airbus’ Thailand team.
Featuring state-of-the-art electronic instruments and a 4-axis autopilot system, the 11-ton-category twin-turbine H225M offers a combination of endurance and fast cruise speed, combined with a 700 NM range that can be extended with air-to-air or hover in-flight refueling capabilities. Powered by two powerful Makila 2A1 engines, the H225M's five-blade rotor provides an exceptionally low vibration level, and the modular Spheriflex design of rotor mechanical assemblies allows for lower maintenance.
Using the proven military heritage of Airbus’ Puma and Super Puma rotorcraft, the H225M was designed and is equipped for high survivability. Its airframe has reinforced structural main frames and is equipped with high energy-absorbing landing gear, along with self-sealing and crashworthy fuel tanks. Cockpit protection is provided by armored and energy-absorbing crew seats, while the cabin can be equipped with armor plating in the floors and walls or fitted with armor-plated carpets. The rotor blades’ multi-box construction enhances their resistance to bullet impacts.
Contributing to the H225M's survivability is a radar warning receiver, missile approach warning system, laser warning receiver and chaff/flare dispensers. The engine exhausts can be fitted with infrared suppressors, with protection against sand and ice provided by inlet design and multi-purpose air intakes.
As a true multi-purpose and versatile military asset, the H225M enables military forces to deploy wherever and whenever needed. Operating both from ships and from land, even in icing conditions, this helicopter has an all-weather capability supported by night vision goggle compatibility. Close to 90 units are currently in service, achieving 100,700 flight hours to-date.
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