Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
4 October 2016
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Description: The Aerospatiale, thereafter Eurocopter and now Airbus Helicopters, SA 330 Puma is a medium lift multi-purpose helicopter designed in the 1960s to meet the requirements of the French Army for an all-weather transport helicopter. The prototype flew for the first time on April 15, 1965. The first production aircraft performed its maiden flight in September 1968. The United Kingdom's Royal Air Force (RAF) joined the SA 330 Puma program through an agreement signed in 1967. In 1981, Aerospatiale introduced the second generation Puma featuring stretched fuselage and more powerful engines. Known as the AS 332 Super Puma or AS 552 Cougar, the prototype first flew in September 1978. The third generation of the Puma helicopter family developed by Eurocopter first flew in November 2000. The civil version is called EC 225 Super Puma and the military version EC 725 Cougar. These aircraft feature a five-bladed main rotor, more powerful engines, state-of-the-art avionics, glass cockpit, more cabin room and improved performance. The EC 225 and EC 725 helicopters achieved initial operational capability in 2004/2005. More than 1,000 Puma/Super Puma/Cougar helicopters have been produced for customers worldwide.
The Airbus Helicopters H215 is an evolution of the twin-engine AS332 C1e/L1e aircraft intended for business and industrial operators. The H215 is a versatile, economic and robust helicopter that combines advanced avionics and a reliable platform for rugged multi-mission capabilities. It offers long range capabilities, power, speed, a large useful payload and very good lifting performance in hot and high environments. Both EASA and FAA certified, the aircraft is equipped with the latest, most modern technologies meeting the latest safety requirements of the market. This includes a glass cockpit and the renowned 4-axis autopilot used on the H225. The H215 helicopter was launched in November 2015 and the first production aircraft is scheduled to roll off the assembly line in Romania by 2017.
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