24 November 2016
A Royal Thai Navy H145M helicopter conducting deck landing operations onboard HTMS Angthong. (all photos: Royal Thai Navy)
A Royal Thai Navy (RTN) H145M helicopter has successfully completed a series of deck landing trials on board the service’s Endurance-class landing platform dock (LPD) platform, HTMS Angthong (791).
The trials were conducted on 22 November off the coast of Pattaya, and involved a single airframe with serial number 2217, an official from the service’s 202 Naval Aviation Squadron confirmed with IHS Jane’s on the day after.
The aircraft is part of a fleet of five newly inducted H145M helicopters that were ordered under a 2014 contract with Airbus Helicopters. The airframes were formally commissioned in early November 2016, although technical acceptance for the first two aircraft was completed in April the same year.
According to Airbus Helicopters, the RTN’s H145Ms have been equipped for a range of military operations that include search-and-rescue (SAR), reconnaissance, and medical evacuation missions.
The helicopters are powered by Turbomeca Arriel 2E engines, and are equipped with weather radar system, cargo hooks, and an internal long-range fuel tank system. The RTN also confirmed with IHS Jane’s in May 2016 that the helicopters have been fitted with two machine gun pedestals each, one each on the port and starboard doors.
Deck landing exercises on board the ship with the aircraft type are scheduled to continue over the next few weeks to further familiarise Angthong ‘s crew with the helicopter, including stowing and lashing procedures, said the squadron official.