- Indonesia has designated two of its AS 565 Panther naval helicopters for anti-submarine warfare duties
- Nine other airframes are currently being fitted for multimodal missions and will replace the service's fleet of ageing BO 105 helicopters
Only two of the Indonesian Navy's (Tentera Nasional Indonesia - Angkatan Laut: TNI-AL's) 11 Airbus Helicopters AS 565MBe Panther helicopters are equipped for anti-submarine warfare (ASW) operations, a military source told Jane's on 11 June.
The rest of the helicopters in the fleet are currently being configured for multimodal operations, and will progressively replace the TNI-AL Naval Aviation Fleet's squadron of ageing BO 015 utility helicopters.
"In the future, the remaining nine helicopters might be installed with ASW equipment like the dipping-sonar, but for now, only two airframes in the fleet have been dedicated for ASW operations," the source said.
Indonesia ordered 11 new AS565 MBe Panther helicopters in 2014 as part of efforts to improve the TNI-AL's embarked aviation and ASW capabilities. According to information provided by Airbus Helicopters, the Panther variant that has been supplied to the TNI-AL has an increased maximum take-off weight over its predecessors, at 4,500 kg, compared with 4,300 kg for earlier versions of the AS 565.
The aircraft is equipped with two Safran Arriel 2N engines that have been optimised for 'hot and high' conditions, and enables the helicopter to reach a top speed of 165 kt and a range of 780 km. The aircraft is also equipped with Airbus Helicopter's latest-generation tail rotor and a four-axis autopilot to help reduce crew workload.
Under a collaboration agreement between Airbus Helicopters and state-owned Indonesian company PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PTDI), all 11 airframes were delivered in the 'green' state to PTDI's facilities in Bandung where they received their service liveries, and underwent further outfitting, including installation of mission equipment.
Want to read more? For analysis on this article and access to all our insight content, please enquire about our subscription options at ihsmarkit.com/janes