State-owned aircraft manufacturer PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PTDI) has delivered a CN-235 MPA (Maritime Patrol Aircraft) and two AS565 MBe Panther ASW (Anti-Submarine Warfare) helicopters to the Indonesian Ministry of Defense on 15 June. These aircraft were then handed over to the Indonesian Navy as the operator to strengthen its reconnaissance and anti-submarine capability. Global Business Press reported that the AS565 ASW helicopters are a result of a collaboration between PTDI and Airbus, where Airbus built the rotorcraft and PTDI conducted ASW system development, integration, and testing. Indonesian Navy is now operating four CN-235 MPA from the planned acquisition of 11 aircraft that was announced in 2018.
“In addition to the ability to carry out maritime patrol operations, CN-235 MPA is also the first PTDI aircraft that has been modified and upgraded all of its avionic systems by using the latest full glass cockpit technology and integrated digital display, which is for the composition of the local content itself has reached 42.56%. These ASW helicopters have undergone a series of tests, including flight performance, flying qualities, affected system test, and torpedo and sonar initial test to ensure that all installed systems do not significantly change the helicopter’s flying characteristics and that all operations can be carried out safely,” said Gita Amperiawan, PTDI President Director.
The CASA/IPTN CN-235 is a medium-range twin-engined transport aircraft that was jointly developed by CASA of Spain and Indonesian manufacturer PTDI, as a regional airliner and military transport. Its primary military roles include maritime patrol, surveillance, and air transport. One CN-235 MPA aircraft was delivered by Indonesian Aerospace to the Indonesian defence ministry in June 2008. The CN235 MPA is in service with the Indonesian Navy. The platform has an overall length of 21.4 m, a wingspan of 25.81 m, and an endurance of 8.5 hours. In addition to maritime patrol and search-and-rescue operations, the Indonesian Navy also utilises the aircraft for anti-submarine warfare operations.
Indonesia ordered 11 new AS565 MBe Panther helicopters in 2014 as part of efforts to improve the Indonesian Navy’s embarked aviation and ASW capabilities. According to information provided by Airbus Helicopters, the Panther variant that has been supplied to the Indonesian Navy has an increased maximum take-off weight over its predecessors, at 4,500 kg, compared with 4,300 kg for earlier versions of the AS 565. The aircraft is equipped with two Safran Arriel 2N engines that have been optimised for ‘hot and high’ conditions, and enables the helicopter to reach a top speed of 165 kt and a range of 780 km. The aircraft is also equipped with Airbus Helicopter’s latest-generation tail rotor and a four-axis autopilot to help reduce crew workload.