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Helibras to upgrade Brazilian Army’s AS350 Ecureuil helicopter fleet


The AS350 Ecureuil helicopter. An Eurocopter photo

ITAJUBÁ, BRAZIL (BNS): Eurocopter's Brazilian subsidiary Helibras has received a contract to upgrade Brazilian Army's fleet of AS350 Ecureuil helicopters.

Under the deal, a total of 36 Ecureuils single-engine multi-role helicopters operated by the Brazilian Army Aviation Command will be modernised. It will include rebuilding of three of these aircraft, according to Eurocopter.

The modernisation will include installation of glass cockpits, integration of Automatic Flight Control Systems (AFCS) with autopilot and use of improved seats for pilots to provide better visibility and enhanced protection for the choppers.

This upgrade programme will enhance the lifespan of the helicopters by another 25 years. The Brazilian Army has been operating the AS350s for over two decades.

The modernisation work will begin this year with its completion expected in 2018.

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