Military, Public Service

Thailand, Spain Air Forces Add More Super Pumas

By S.L. Fuller | October 5, 2016
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The Airbus Helicopters Super Puma family has added three more to its international fleet as Thailand’s air force ordered two additional H225Ms and Spain’s air force received the country’s first H215. Neither air force is new to Super Pumas, as Thailand has an existing fleet of four EC725s and Spain’s fleet incudes the Aerospatiale AS332 and AS532.

A reception ceremony was held at the Albacete Airbus facility on Monday, according to a company news release. The rotorcraft is fresh off its final flight tests at the same facility, which occurred on Sept. 22. Reception comes as the result of a purchase negotiated in July. 

The H215 is set to arrive at its base in Gando, where it will perform search and rescue, and personnel recover, operations, before year’s end. This twin-engine, heavy helicopter features multi-function digital screens and an advanced four-axis autopilot. Only a short training program will keep the H215 grounded after delivery, as the crews are already familiar with operating similar aircraft. 

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Thailand’s newly ordered H225Ms will not be delivered until 2019, according to news reports. But the Air Force is expecting delivery of two EC725s, ordered in 2014, before the end of the year. The H22Ms will be performing search and rescue missions, as well as troop transports and other operations.

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