Australia is the latest country to give the increasingly popular Kamov Ka-32A11BC a certificate of airworthiness, making it the first Russian-made helicopter to achieve such approval. Civilian operators can now use it in a variety of roles including search and rescue (SAR), firefighting and for industrial work requiring sling-loads.
The Ka-32A11BC is the latest civil variant of the old Ka-27 (Helix), which was originally produced for the Russian Navy and is still in service with military forces around the world including China, Vietnam, Taiwan and India.
The Ka-32A11BC is the version certified by Canada (1998) and Europe and has Klimov TV3-117MA engines. According to Russian Helicopters (a subsidiary of state-run investment group UIC Oboronprom), the aircraft received certification in China, Indonesia and South Korea in 2008 and a year later was granted its European airworthiness certificate from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). Two years later it was also certified in India and Brazil.
Photo courtesy of Russian Helicopters
The helicopter is now being used for a variety of tasks in different nations: hauling cargo sling loads for Brazilian operator Helipark Taxi Aero as well as Heliswiss in Switzerland; SAR in Kazakhstan; and SAR and firefighting in Spain.
In August 2012, the Russian Emergencies Ministry (EMERCOM) received the last of five aircraft that can be outfitted for SAR, firefighting and medical missions.
Russian Helicopters spokesman Roman Kirillov says the helicopter has been successfully deployed in Russia, Canada, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, China, Austria, South Korea, Indonesia and Japan.
The Australian helicopter market could hold good prospects for Russian Helicopters, as the constant need for multi-functional and reliable specialized helicopters is acutely felt in this country. The Ka-32A11BC is the first Russian-made helicopter to receive airworthiness certification in Australia.
The Ka-32A11BC was demonstrated at the Dubai Airshow in November this year and Russian Helicopters has declared that the aircraft will now participate in the Australian International Airshow 2013 at Avalon Airport.
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