Airbus Helicopters has been awarded a contract to deliver 11 AS565 MBe Panther helicopters to the Indonesian Navy.
The new rotorcraft will be used for naval anti-submarine warfare (ASW) missions and to support operations from land bases and vessels.
Scheduled for delivery within three years, the new AS565 MBe helicopters will be outfitted for their ASW mission by state-owned aircraft maker PT Dirgantara Indonesia, before being deployed by the navy.
The aircraft will be equipped with dipping sonar helicopter long-range active sonar (HELRAS) and torpedo launch system, which will enable smooth operations from land and ship deck.
Airbus Helicopters South East Asia and Pacific region head Philippe Monteux said: "The Panther now becomes one of the world’s most capable light / medium anti-submarine warfare platforms, with an advanced ASW suite and the capability to operate from corvettes or small frigates.
"This fully capable, modern solution meets the naval requirements of Indonesia and other countries in the region, benefiting from our partnership with PT Dirgantara Indonesia and the industry’s best system suppliers."
Indonesia’s latest order will add to the existing Airbus Helicopters rotorcraft fleet, including the light EC120 Colibris, Fennecs and BO-105, Panthers, Pumas and Super Pumas.
The Indonesian Air Force is yet to receive the EC725 for combat search-and-rescue missions.
PT Dirgantara Indonesia president Budi Santoso said: "Together, we are able to identify and deliver the most modern and cost-effective solutions for the Indonesian Government and at the same time associate the significant involvement of the Indonesian industry."
Image: Airbus Helicopters’ AS565 MB helicopter. Photo: courtesy of Marine Nationale.