Eurocopter Signs Important Helicopters Sale with Bulgaria

Released on Friday, January 28, 2005
Arriel 2C
AS 532 Cougar
AS565 Panther
Makila 1A1
NATO - North Atlantic Treaty Organization
SAR - Search and Rescue
UN - United Nations
Eurocopter has announced that Bulgaria has signed an important contract for the purchase of 12 As 532 AL Cougar for the Bulgarian Air Force and 6 AS 565 MB Panther helicopters for the Bulgarian Navy.

All these aircraft will be delivered between 2006 and 2009. The first three Cougar helicopters are due for delivery to the Bulgarian Air Force by end 2006. Eight Cougars are intended for tactical transport missions and the four others will fly combat search and rescue (SAR) missions.

The six Panthers will perform sea surveillance and SAR missions, along with more common anti-submarine warfare and anti-surface operations on behalf of the Bulgarian Navy. These acquisitions are the result of Bulgaria entry into NATO structure in March 2004. Cougars will play a vital role inside the Bulgarian armed forces assisting NATO and UN forces in international peacekeeping out-of-theater operations.

Both aircraft are twin-engine types with Cougar relying on Makila 1A1 engine and Panther on Arriel 2C turboshaft, both engines from Turbomeca. Cougar AL variant can be equipped with side and pod mounted guns and rocket launchers providing secondary fire support capability.


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