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Air Platforms

Brazilian Navy works to grow its aviation wing

18 March 2019
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Helibras in 2016 conducted the initial flight for the first armed H225M helicopter to be delivered to the Brazilian Navy. Source: Helibras

Brazil is upgrading or buying a series of new aviation assets as it has commissioned new amphibious ships and aspires to grow its navy's reach.

The Brazilian Navy commissioned NDM Bahia (G40) landing platform dock in 2016 and PHM Atlantico (A140) helicopter carrier in 2018 and is working to bolster its aviation capacity. Its helicopters provide support to law enforcement forces and Marine Corps training, and they occasionally contribute to disaster relief operations.

The first two of eight Super Lynx Mk21A (AH-11A locally) helicopters being modernised by Leonardo to the Wild Lynx AH-11B standard were accepted by Squadron HA-1 in February, and two more are to be inducted this year. Under a June 2014 contract, Leonardo is installing a CTS800-4N engine, electrically-driven rescue system, glass cockpit, navigation equipment, traffic collision avoidance system (TCAS), RX-5 automatic identification system, SAGE electronic support measures (ESM) system, and Vicon XF countermeasures dispensers on 8 of the 12 AH-11As of Squadron HA-1. Another two AH-11Bs are to be received in 2019. The programme is scheduled to be complete in 2022, but Brazil is also considering adding a new anti-ship missile to its AH-11Bs to replace the Sea Skua missile.

Under its H-XBR project, the navy is receiving 16 H225M Super Cougar medium-sized helicopters from Helibras. Seven in a general-purpose (UH-15) and three CSAR (UH-15A) variants have been received by Squadron HU-2. The eighth and final UH-15 is to be received in 2020. Five H225Ms in an anti-surface warfare (AH-15B) configuration are to be received between 2019 and 2022, the navy told Jane's . The AH-15B includes a Naval Tactical Data Management System (NTDMS) mission system, APS-143C(V)3 surveillance radar, STAR Safire III imager, IDAS self-protection suite, and two Exocet AM39 Block 2 Mod 2 missiles.

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