Eurocopter marked its 30-plus year presence in the Middle East and Gulf region with a major participation at this week’s Dubai Helishow (2-4 November 2010), underscoring its helicopter product line’s capabilities for evolving applications that include anti-piracy, counter-insurgency and border patrol missions; corporate and VVIP transportation; emergency medical airlift; search & rescue; as well as the servicing of offshore oil/gas platforms.
The company’s long-term commitment to meet requirements of civil operators and armed forces in this geographic zone has resulted in more than 650 Eurocopter helicopters being flown in the Arab world by both civil and military users. Its success is backed by Eurocopter’s dedication to ensuring optimized support to a growing customer base in daily operations.
For critical homeland security missions on land and at sea, Eurocopter’s EC635, EC645 and AS565 Panther helicopters are highly capable aircraft that respond to current future scenarios in Middle East and Arabian Gulf.
The EC635 offers the combination of a compact helicopter with performance and maneuverability for use in scout, anti-piracy and public security missions. This lightweight twin-engine helicopter is being fielded in growing numbers across the Arab world, building on its current operation with the Royal Jordanian Air Force. At the Dubai Helishow, the EC635 is being exhibited as a scale mock-up, with mission equipment representing the Stand Alone Weapon System (SAWS) developed by Eurocopter and ATE.
SAWS incorporates a mission computer, an electro-optical system with TV, infrared cameras and laser telemeter (with laser designator as needed), a targeting system with a helmet-mounted sight and display, two multi-purpose weapon pylons with slaving units, and a choice of guns, missiles and unguided or guided rockets as weapons loads.
The EC645 from Eurocopter also is well tailored for the region’s security and defense needs, providing excellent performance, a spacious cabin and proven reliability. The twin-engine EC645 – which is an armed derivate of the Eurocopter EC145 in service many operators around the world, including the U.S. Army – answers the increasing demand by armed forces for a multi-role helicopter that can accommodate a large range of mission equipment, including SAWS.
The larger AS565 Panther maintains the speed and maneuverability features required for security and defense missions, with its capabilities further enhanced by the endurance, range and unmatched capabilities of this twin-engine helicopter in overwater surveillance, tracking and search & rescue – which have been proven in Middle East operations with countries protecting their water territories like UAE or Saudi Arabia.