Euro­copter’s Puma Mk2 he­li­copter up­graded

SP's MAI - - AEROSPACE -

The up­grade of UK Min­istry of De­fence Puma air­craft took a ma­jor step for­ward last week with Euro­copter com­plet­ing its first in­ter­nal qual­i­fi­ca­tion of the Puma Mk2 air­craft. This up­grade will sig­nif­i­cantly en­hance the air­craft’s per­for­mance, mis­sion ca­pa­bil­ity and safety. The first mod­i­fied air­craft will fly into the UK in the com­ing weeks to con­clude test and eval­u­a­tion ac­tiv­i­ties at QinetiQ’s Boscombe Down fa­cil­ity.

Euro­copter’s first in­ter­nal qual­i­fi­ca­tion of the Puma Mk2 was achieved on July 6, con­clud­ing the first phase of the planned developments, with fur­ther en­hance­ments to its mis­sion ca­pa­bil­i­ties planned over the com­ing months. To date, Euro­copter has com­pleted the ini­tial up­grade process on three Puma he­li­copters, all of which are now in­volved in flight test­ing. The first of these will be de­liv­ered to QinetiQ’s Boscombe Down mil­i­tary test and eval­u­a­tion cen­tre for fur­ther tri­als.

The Puma Mk2 he­li­copters rep­re­sent a key el­e­ment of the UK’s medium bat­tle­field sup­port he­li­copter ca­pa­bil­ity, and will be de­ployed for tac­ti­cal troop and load move­ment by day and night. The up­grade will ex­tend the op­er­a­tional life­time and sig­nif­i­cantly up­grade the ca­pa­bil­i­ties of 24 of the Royal Air Force Puma he­li­copters.

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