The Brazilian military has contracted multinational aerospace firm Airbus to manufacture and deliver 27 single-engine H125 helicopters.
Acquired through the Combat Aircraft Programme Coordinating Committee, the aircraft is expected to bolster the training capacity of the country’s air force and navy.
According to Air Force Commander Carlos de Almeida Baptista Junior, the acquisition of light utility helicopters from Airbus represents the realization of a project aimed at equipping the Brazilian armed forces with modern aircraft.
He further suggested that the Airbus H125 helicopters would help meet the needs of the military “for the next 30 years,” especially in areas such as tactical transport, search and rescue missions, and civil population support.
The helicopters will be produced at a facility in southeastern Brazil.
They are set to replace the aging AS350 and Bell 206 helicopters in service with the Brazilian Air Force and Navy.
Training Next-Gen Pilots
A member of Airbus’ Ecureuil family of helicopters, the H125 can carry up to seven passengers and has a maximum speed of 140 knots (259 kilometers/161 miles per hour).
Its glass touchscreen cockpit instrument panel is equipped with the Garmin G500H TXi and Vehicle & Engine Multifunction Display, offering pilots enhanced safety and reduced workload.
The helicopter also features a crash-resistant fuel system suitable for swing load operations.
According to Airbus, the H125s to be delivered to Brazil will be compatible with night vision goggles for missions conducted in low-light environments.
They will also have a variety of mission equipment, including a winch and a hook to train pilots for potential missions.
“Airbus Helicopters is proud to see the H125 supporting the training of the next generation of pilots of the Brazilian armed forces,” Airbus Chief Executive Officer Bruno Even said.
“The H125 is a versatile helicopter used widely in both the civil and military markets as a training platform thanks to its ruggedness, reliability, and easy maintenance.”