Eurocopter pitches Panther for Naval Utility Helicopter
The recently floated Naval Utility Helicopter (NUH) programme is likely to be fought closely, with as many as five choppers that fit the bill and expected to throw their hat in the ring. Eurocopter, currently awaiting a decision on India’s reconnaissance and surveillance helicopter (RSH) competition for 197 helicopters for the IAF and Army, will be pitching its AS565 MB Panther for the NUH bid. The AS565 MB Panther is the military version of Eurocopter’s multi-role, twin-engine Dauphin family – whose largest civilian operator is Pawan Hans Helicopters Ltd. The mission equipment and systems integrated on these rotorcraft include anti-ship missiles, search torpedoes, surveillance and weather radars, electro optical system (EOS) with FLIR & TV sensors associated with laser range finder, glass cockpits.
With night vision goggle compatibility, a Link II data link that couples the helicopters’ sensors to shipboard mission systems, as well as countermeasures suites with missile/radar/laser warning receivers and chaff & flare dispensers.