Thales has been selected to modernise the avionics systems installed on the Brazilian Army’s AS350 L1 Esquilo and AS550 Fennec multi-purpose military helicopters.
The company will supply its integrated electronic stand-by instrument (IESI), which incorporates three essential back-up functions, namely artificial horizon, altimeter and airspeed indicator in only one line-replaceable unit (LRU), for 36 helicopters.
Thales helicopter avionics business vice-president in charge Yves Joannic said: "The selection of our IESI system by the Brazilian Army underlines the perfect fit of our solution for the upgrading of helicopters.
"Thales’s IESI will offer the Brazilian Army the highest levels of reliability for their missions in any flight conditions."
Using the company’s expertise in both active-matrix LCD (AMLCD) technology and solid state sensors, including inertial and pressure components, IESI is primarily suited for helicopter missions and performs well at low speed, low altitude and high-turn rates.
Fitted with colour, high-definition and fully sunlight-readable AMLCD, the system is resistant to high-intensity radio frequencies (HIRF), and is also durable in humid, saline and high-vibration environments, ensuring optimal operation in all sorts of circumstances.
In addition, the system is also able to receive and control other functions, such as automatic flight control system (AFCS) back up and radio management system (RMS) back up, depending on customer requirements.
Currently flying on the Sikorsky S-76D, IESI has also been selected by Airbus Helicopters for its range of light and medium-lift helicopters, including the EC135, EC145, EC155, EC175, and their military versions, including the upgraded AS 365 K2 Super Pantera.
Scheduled to be delivered this year, the first IESI batch will be integrated into six initial helicopters by Airbus’ Brazilian subsidiary Helibras, while the retrofit of all helicopters is expected to be completed by 2018.