Airbus, Korea Aerospace to launch Light Armed Helicopter Serial Production

  • Defensemirror.com Bureau
  • 11:32 AM, September 1, 2023
  • 1299
Airbus, Korea Aerospace to launch Light Armed Helicopter Serial Production
Light Armed Helicopter @KAI

Airbus Helicopters and Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) have entered into a pact to commence the serial manufacturing phase of the 5-tonne class Light Armed Helicopters (LAH).

This follows the contract awarded by the country’s Defence Acquisition Programme Administration to KAI in December 2022 to supply an initial batch of ten LAH to the Republic of Korea Army.

Deliveries will begin at the end of 2024, with follow-on orders to continue into the next decade.

This agreement will see Airbus Helicopters and KAI enter into the next phase of the programme, ramping up production of the LAH at KAI’s Sacheon facility in South Korea. Airbus Helicopters will support KAI’s order fulfilment with delivery of the required kits for the mass production.

The two companies have also signed an agreement to deepen their commitment in the joint Korean Utility Helicopter (KUH Surion) programme, to meet a wide range of operational requirements for the military, civil and parapublic markets.

This follows the recent launch of the joint development of new KUH variants, such as the Marine Attack Helicopter and Mine Countermeasure Helicopter, and their corresponding future versions.

Airbus and KAI started their industrial partnership in 2006 when the two companies jointly worked on the KUH Surion, followed by the development of the LAH.

The LAH prototype completed its first flight in July 2019 and was successfully qualified in 2022, upon completion of a rigorous test campaign for combat suitability in all-weather conditions.

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