|Helibras will modernize the Brazilian Army Aviation Command’s fleet of 36 Eurocopter AS350s.
Eurocopter’s Helibras subsidiary has won a contract to modernize a fleet of 36 AS350 Ecureuils in operation with the Brazilian Army Aviation Command. The agreement includes a complete rebuilding of three of the helicopters. Terms of the deal call for work to start during 2011 and run through 2018. Helibras will modify the AS350s at its facility in Itajuba in southeastern Brazil. The military unit first incorporated the EC135 into its operations more than 20 years ago, and the upgrade effort will extend the service life of the helicopters by at least 25 years, according to Helibras.
Among the work slated for the helicopters includes: installation of a glass cockpit, automatic flight control system (AFCS), autopilot, and new seating. Helibras will develop the avionics suite for the AS350 with Sagem Avionics and Aeroeletronica, under an agreement inked in September. Sagem will supply the displays and Aeroeletronica will provide the computers and install the system.
Under a separate contract, Helibras handed over three EC725s to the Brazilian Armed Forces in December. Part of a 50-helicopter order, the initial trio of multi-role helicopters was built in France and final completions will occur in Brazil. Starting in 2012, assembly of the EC725s will occur at the new Helibras production complex in Itajuba. Deliveries are set to continue through 2016.(From February 2010 Rotorcraft Report)