Airbus H225M. Photo courtesy of Airbus Helicopters
The Airbus Helicopters H225M, a member of the H215 Super Puma family of helicopters, has exceeded the 100,000 flight hours milestone, Airbus said Oct. 4.
Known as the Caracal, the H225M entered service with the French Air Force in 2006 in Lebanon when the rotorcraft evacuated several hundred people. The helicopter has supported combat and relief operations in Afghanistan, Chad, the Ivory Coast, the Central African Republic, Libya and Mali.
Michel Macia, head of the Airbus Super Puma program, said in a statement that the H225M has flown in "some of the harshest theaters of operation" and that "its state-of-the art avionics and world renowned four axis autopilot, its exceptional range and payload capacities, combined with a large cabin designed to carry 28 troops and powerful air-to-ground and air-to-surface armament and electronic warfare system allow the H225M operators to carry out the most demanding missions."
The H225M has all-weather and night-vision-goggle capabilities, an advertised range of more than 800 miles, and can fly for up to 10 hours if refueled in the air.
France, Brazil, Mexico, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand have a total 88 H225Ms in service.
The Royal Thai Air Force recently placed a follow-on order for four aircraft for combat-search-and-rescue and troop transport missions. Other recent customers for the H225M include Singapore and Kuwait, which signed a contract in 2016 for 30 aircraft.