27 December at the Helibras (Airbus Helicopters’ Brazilian subsidiary) facilities in Itajubá (MG), the Brazilian Navy received last first C-SAR (Combat Search and Rescue) aircraft of the H225M helicopters. Under the H-XBR program, which provides for the delivery of 16 units of the H-225M helicopter to the Brazilian Navy. The first two helicopters, which are designated UH-15A Super Cougar in national service, were delivered to Squadron HU-2 of São Pedro da Aldeia naval airbase in June and July 2017 respectively. Besides the CSAR role, they can be used for search and rescue (SAR) and can operate from NDM Bahia (G40) and PHM Atlantico (A140) ships.
The C-SAR is one of today’s most critical operations and aims to rescue crews in hostile territory during a conflict. To accomplish this, the aircraft brings a set of sensors and self-protection system capable of facing the most modern threats. The integrated suite of auxiliary defense equipment is responsible for the self-protection of the aircraft and is intended to increase its survival capacity in conflict scenarios. The receipt of another UH-15 in the C-SAR version enables the Brazilian Navy to rescue crews and special troops fulfilling the doctrinal aspects of this type of mission. The receipt of another UH-15 in the C-SAR version enables the Brazilian Navy to rescue crews and special troops fulfilling the doctrinal aspects of this type of mission.
The helicopters are equipped with glass cockpit ready for night vision goggles (NVG), the C-SAR version also features a FLIR (Forward Looking Infra-Red), PLS (Personnel Locator System) equipment and a Spectrolab searchlight. The FLIR is capable of producing a high-quality 360° coverage, long-distance, all weather optical videos. Key features include the laser ranger finder, to accurately provide distance to the target, and the geo point package, with inertial measurement unit, to reduce workload showing latitude and longitude. PLS is a localization system used in C-SAR missions that indicates the marking / distance of a survivor, by means of a code or a known frequency. It can also be used for the rendezvous with special operations teams. The spectrolab search light will amplify the search and rescue capability of the Brazilian Navy, being a powerful variable beam headlamp (4° to 20°), which can be controlled horizontally or vertically and also allows the application of an infrared filter.
Provisions are made for installation of two side-mounted FN Herstal’s light weapon mounts armed with the company’s MAG58M 7.62 × 51 mm machine gun. It is comprised by a radar warning receiver (RWR), laser warning subsystem (LWS) and missile warning subsystem (MWS). Complementing the Electronic Warfare System (EWS), the aircraft also have the Jet Dilution Device (JDD) installed in the exhaust of the engine gases in order to reduce the thermal signature and also with the Chaff / Flare countermeasure dispenser.