Aérospatiale Alouette III

Aérospatiale Alouette III

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The Aérospatiale Alouette III (alwɛt, Lark
Lark
Larks are passerine birds of the family Alaudidae. All species occur in the Old World, and in northern and eastern Australia; only one, the Shore Lark, has spread to North America, where it is called the Horned Lark...

) is a single-engine, light utility helicopter
Helicopter
A helicopter is a type of rotorcraft in which lift and thrust are supplied by one or more engine-driven rotors. This allows the helicopter to take off and land vertically, to hover, and to fly forwards, backwards, and laterally...

 developed by Sud Aviation
Sud Aviation
Sud-Aviation was a French state-owned aircraft manufacturer, originating from the merger of Sud-Est and Sud-Ouest on March 1, 1957...

. It was manufactured by Aérospatiale
Aérospatiale
Aérospatiale was a French aerospace manufacturer that built both civilian and military aircraft, rockets and satellites. It was originally known as Société Nationale Industrielle Aérospatiale...

 of France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, and under licence by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited based in Bangalore, India, is one of Asia's largest aerospace companies. Under the management of the Indian Ministry of Defence, this state-owned company is mainly involved in aerospace industry, which includes manufacturing and assembling aircraft, navigation and...

 in India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 as Hal Chetak and Industria Aeronautică Română
Industria Aeronautica Româna
Industria Aeronautică Română or Romanian Aeronautic Industry in English, is a Romanian aerospace manufacturer founded in 1925. Based in Ghimbav, near Braşov, Romania, the company employs around 1200 specialists including more than 170 engineers...

 in Romania
Romania
Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

.

The Alouette III is the successor to the Alouette II, being larger and having more seating

Development


The first version of the Alouette III, the SE 3160 prototype, first flew on 28 February 1959. Production of the SA 316A (SE 3160) began in 1961 and remained in production until 1968, when it was replaced by the SA 316B. The last and 1437th Alouette III left the Marignane assembly lines in 1979, when the main production line in France was closed down. The last Alouette III from Aérospatiale was delivered in 1985.

Over 500 units were manufactured under licence in Romania, India and Switzerland. Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited based in Bangalore, India, is one of Asia's largest aerospace companies. Under the management of the Indian Ministry of Defence, this state-owned company is mainly involved in aerospace industry, which includes manufacturing and assembling aircraft, navigation and...

 (HAL) obtained a licence to build Alouette IIIs as the HAL Chetak in India. Over 300 units were produced by HAL as it continued to independently update and indigenize the helicopter over the years, and a variant is still in production though in diminishing volumes. Versions of the Alouette III were also either licence-built or assembled by IAR in Romania (as the IAR 316
IAR 316
-References:* http://avia.russian.ee/helicopters_eng/iar-317.php* https://sites.google.com/site/stingrayslistofrotorcraft/iar-317-airfox-See also:...

), F+W Emmen in Switzerland, and by Fokker
Fokker
Fokker was a Dutch aircraft manufacturer named after its founder, Anthony Fokker. The company operated under several different names, starting out in 1912 in Schwerin, Germany, moving to the Netherlands in 1919....

 and Lichtwerk in the Netherlands
Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

.

Production numbers are as follows:
  • France: 1453
  • India: 300+ (Still in production)
  • Romania: 230
  • Switzerland: 60

Argentina


The Argentine Naval Aviation
Argentine Naval Aviation
The Argentine Naval Aviation is the naval aviation branch of the Argentine Navy and one of its four operational commands...

 purchased 14 helicopters. One SA316B was on board the ARA General Belgrano
ARA General Belgrano
The ARA General Belgrano was an Argentine Navy light cruiser in service from 1951 until 1982. Formerly the , she saw action in the Pacific theater of World War II before being sold to Argentina. After almost 31 years of service, she was sunk during the Falklands War by the Royal Navy submarine ...

 when she was sunk by the HMS Conqueror's
HMS Conqueror
Nine ships of the Royal Navy have been named HMS Conqueror, whilst another was planned: was an 8-gun fireship captured from the French by in 1745 and sold in 1748. was a 68-gun third-rate launched in 1758 and wrecked in 1760. was a 74-gun third-rate launched in 1773 and broken up in 1794. was a...

 torpedoes during the Falklands (Islas Malvinas) War
Falklands War
The Falklands War , also called the Falklands Conflict or Falklands Crisis, was fought in 1982 between Argentina and the United Kingdom over the disputed Falkland Islands and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands...

 with Great Britain in 1982 and a second one played an important role during the Invasion of South Georgia
Invasion of South Georgia
The Invasion of South Georgia , also known as the Battle of Grytviken, took place on 3 April 1982, when Argentine naval forces seized control of the east coast of South Georgia after overpowering a small group of Royal Marines at Grytviken...

. On 2 December 2010, the last example was retired at a ceremony held at BAN Comandante Espora, Bahía Blanca
Bahía Blanca
Bahía Blanca is a city located in the south-west of the province of Buenos Aires, Argentina, by the Atlantic Ocean, and seat of government of Bahía Blanca Partido. It has a population of 274,509 inhabitants according to the...

.

Australia


From April 1964 to 1967, three machines were delivered from France for local assembly in Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

, and were used by Royal Australian Air Force
Royal Australian Air Force
The Royal Australian Air Force is the air force branch of the Australian Defence Force. The RAAF was formed in March 1921. It continues the traditions of the Australian Flying Corps , which was formed on 22 October 1912. The RAAF has taken part in many of the 20th century's major conflicts...

 (RAAF) at the Woomera Rocket Range for light passenger transport and recovery of missile parts after test launches at the Range.

France


The Alouette III entered in service with the French Armed forces in 1960.

In June 1960, an Alouette III carrying seven people made take-offs and landings on Mont Blanc
Mont Blanc
Mont Blanc or Monte Bianco , meaning "White Mountain", is the highest mountain in the Alps, Western Europe and the European Union. It rises above sea level and is ranked 11th in the world in topographic prominence...

 in the French Alps
French Alps
The French Alps are those portions of the Alps mountain range which stand within France, located in the Rhône-Alpes and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur regions....

 at an altitude of 4,810 meters (15,780 feet), an unprecedented altitude for such activities by a helicopter. The same helicopter again demonstrated the types extraordinary performance in November 1960 by making take-offs and landings with a crew of two and a payload of 250 kg (551 lbs) in the Himalayas
Himalayas
The Himalaya Range or Himalaya Mountains Sanskrit: Devanagari: हिमालय, literally "abode of snow"), usually called the Himalayas or Himalaya for short, is a mountain range in Asia, separating the Indian subcontinent from the Tibetan Plateau...

 at an altitude of 6,004 meters (19,698 feet).

In June 2004, the Alouette III was retired from the French Air Force after 32 years of successful service, being replaced by the Eurocopter EC 355 Ecureuil 2
Eurocopter AS355
The Eurocopter AS355 Ecureuil 2 is a twin-engine light helicopter originally manufactured by Aérospatiale...

.

Ireland


At Baldonnel on 21 September 2007 the Alouette III was retired from the Irish Air Corps
Irish Air Corps
The Air Corps is the air component of the Defence Forces of Ireland providing support to the Army and Naval Service, together with non-military air services such as search and rescue and the Ministerial Air Transport Service...

. During 44 years of successful service, the Irish Alouette III fleet amassed over 77,000 flying hours. As well as routine military missions, the aircraft undertook some 1,717 search-and-rescue missions, saving 542 lives and flew a further 2,882 air ambulance
Air ambulance
An air ambulance is an aircraft used for emergency medical assistance in situations where either a traditional ambulance cannot reach the scene easily or quickly enough, or the patient needs to be transported over a distance or terrain that makes air transportation the most practical transport....

 flights. The oldest of the Alouettes, 195, is kept in 'rotors running' condition for the Air Corps Museum.

India


Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited based in Bangalore, India, is one of Asia's largest aerospace companies. Under the management of the Indian Ministry of Defence, this state-owned company is mainly involved in aerospace industry, which includes manufacturing and assembling aircraft, navigation and...

 built over 300 units of the helicopter under licence as the HAL Chetak. They were primarily in service with the Indian Armed Forces
Indian Armed Forces
The Indian Armed Forces are the military forces of the Republic of India. They consist of the Army, Navy and Air Force, supported by three paramilitary forces and various inter-service institutions such as the Strategic Forces Command.The President of India is...

 in training, transport, CASEVAC (Casualty Evacuation), communications and liaison roles. The Chetak is being replaced by HAL Dhruv
HAL Dhruv
The HAL Dhruv is a utility helicopter developed and manufactured by India's Hindustan Aeronautics Limited . Dhruv was first announced in November 1984. The ALH was designed with assistance from MBB in Germany. The Dhruv first flew in 1992; but, due to the changing demands of the Indian Army and...

 in the armed forces. An option to re-engine the HAL Chetak with the Turbomeca TM 333-2B engine for high-altitude operations in the Himalayas was considered, but not pursued.

In 1986 the Government constituted the Army's Aviation Corps and most Chetak operating in AOP Squadrons were transferred from the Air Force on 1 November 1986. The Air Force continues to fly armed Chetaks in the anti-tank role as well as for CASEVAC and general duties.

HAL also exported Chetak helicopters to Namibia
Namibia
Namibia, officially the Republic of Namibia , is a country in southern Africa whose western border is the Atlantic Ocean. It shares land borders with Angola and Zambia to the north, Botswana to the east and South Africa to the south and east. It gained independence from South Africa on 21 March...

 and Suriname
Suriname
Suriname , officially the Republic of Suriname , is a country in northern South America. It borders French Guiana to the east, Guyana to the west, Brazil to the south, and on the north by the Atlantic Ocean. Suriname was a former colony of the British and of the Dutch, and was previously known as...

. India has also donated used Chetak helicopters to other countries such as Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

 and Nepal
Nepal
Nepal , officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas and bordered to the north by the People's Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India...

.

Pakistan


Pakistan purchased 35 Alouette III helicopters and used them in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971
Indo-Pakistani War of 1971
The Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 was a military conflict between India and Pakistan. Indian, Bangladeshi and international sources consider the beginning of the war to be Operation Chengiz Khan, Pakistan's December 3, 1971 pre-emptive strike on 11 Indian airbases...

, mainly for liaison and VIP-transport. Two Alouette IIIs of the Pakistan Air Force
Pakistan Air Force
The Pakistan Air Force is the leading air arm of the Pakistan Armed Forces and is primarily tasked with the aerial defence of Pakistan with a secondary role of providing air support to the Pakistan Army and the Pakistan Navy. The PAF also has a tertiary role of providing strategic air transport...

 (PAF) were shot down during the war.

Portugal


The Alouette III saw service in the Portuguese Colonial War
Portuguese Colonial War
The Portuguese Colonial War , also known in Portugal as the Overseas War or in the former colonies as the War of liberation , was fought between Portugal's military and the emerging nationalist movements in Portugal's African colonies between 1961 and 1974, when the Portuguese regime was...

, during 1960s and 1970s with large utilization in Angola
Angola (Portugal)
Angola is the common name by which the Portuguese colony in southwestern Africa was known across different periods of time...

, Mozambique, and Portuguese Guinea
Portuguese Guinea
Portuguese Guinea was the name for what is today Guinea-Bissau from 1446 to September 10, 1974.-History:...

, where it proved its qualities.

Rhodesia



The Alouette III was originally purchased by the Rhodesians pre UDI. Later a large number of Alouette IIIs were covertly obtained from various sources to increase the capability of No. 7 Squadron and also to replenish the squadron for various losses suffered both by accidents and while on combat missions.

In the 1970s South African Air Force
South African Air Force
The South African Air Force is the air force of South Africa, with headquarters in Pretoria. It is the world's second oldest independent air force, and its motto is Per Aspera Ad Astra...

 (SAAF) Alouette III helicopters were attached to No. 7 Squadron, Rhodesian Air Force. The Alouette III was also the choice of the South African Air Force which meant that training facilities and expertise could be shared. The Portuguese Air Force had also purchased Alouette IIIs.

For Fireforce
Fireforce
Fireforce is a variant of the tactic of vertical envelopment of a target by helicopter-borne and parachute infantry developed by the Rhodesian Security Forces during the Rhodesian Bush War...

 missions a gunship version of the Alouette III was fitted with a Matra MG 151/20 20 mm cannon. The 'K-Car', as it was known, was operated usually with a crew of three, (pilot, gunner and fireforce commander). The 'K-Car' was used as a mobile command post to allow the army commander of the heli-borne troops to direct their operations from the air above them.

Ammunition for the 20mm Cannon was carried in a special bin in the left hand baggage compartment and fed to the cannon via a feed tray through the rear bulkhead. The spent brass was collected in a compartment below the cabin floor. The ammunition bin was supposed to be able to carry 440 rounds of 20mm ammuninition, but typically, only 400-410 rounds were loaded. The gunner in the 'K-Car' was also a technician and therefore he was not only the gunner, but also responsible for all the maintenance of his aircraft.

A Rhodesian Alouette III, 'K-Car' had the distinction of shooting down a Botswana Defence Force
Botswana Defence Force
The Botswana Defence Force is the military of Botswana. It was formed in 1977 and has approximately 9,000 members. The commander is Lieutenant General Tebogo Masire. The commander in chief is the President of Botswana...

 Islander
Islander
The Islander was the 34-foot yawl that Harry Pidgeon sailed around the world single-handed, becoming the second person to do so after Joshua Slocum.-History:...

 on 9 August 1979 with its 20mm cannon.

The standard troop carrying/utility version of the Alouette III in the Rhodesian Air Froce were called 'G-Cars'. They were used by No. 7 Squadron for the troop transport, light air/ground fire support, SAR, casualty evacuation (CASEVAC) and a variety of other roles.

Rhodesian practice was to operate the 'G-Car' with a gunner/technician and to mount twin Mk 2 .303 Brownings
M1919 Browning machine gun
The M1919 Browning is a .30 caliber medium machine gun that was widely used during the 20th century. It was used as a light infantry, coaxial, mounted, aircraft, and anti-aircraft machine gun by the U.S. and many other countries, especially during World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War...

 machine guns, with about 400 rounds per gun. As with the 'K-Car', not only did the technician fly in combat and operate the aircraft's weapons, he was also responsible for all the maintenance of the helicopter too.

In the troop carrying role, a "Stick" of four soldiers was the standard load for the RhAF Alouette III. The seating configuration was two in the rear of the cabin, beside the gunner/technician and behind the pilot, with the "Stick commander" in the centre and his MAG gunner beside him. The other two riflemen were in the front on the rear-facing bench seat. Experience in combat led the Rhodesians to remove all but the pilot's door on the 'G-Car' and to reverse the front passengers to widen the available floorspace and gain flexibility. With the doors removed, it was easier for the soldiers to leave the helicopter quickly. Reversing the front seats opened up floor area and therefore more space for internal cargo was available. The standard Sud Aviation front seats in the 'G-Car' were replaced in the Rhodesian Air Force by a "home made" rear-facing bench seat. While carrying troops, casualties on a stretcher could be carried laterally across the rear of the cabin, one on the floor and another stretcher on a rack above it.

In September 1974 Rhodesian Air Force Alouette IIIs were fitted with anti-STRELA
Strela 2
The 9K32 “Strela-2” is a man-portable, shoulder-fired, low-altitude surface-to-air missile system with a high explosive warhead and passive infrared homing guidance...

 shrouds on the engines, the tail pipe was turned up to deflect the hot exhaust gasses into the rotor downwash and they were given matt paint finishes. This was done to reduce the Infra Red signature of the helicopter and proved to be highly successful for the type.

Several Alouettes were brought down by fire from the ground, but considering the intensity of operations, losses were surprisingly low. This was probably due to the highly skilled pilots' tactics of using ultra low level flying and terrain to keep out of the line of enemy fire.

At one stage, 27 SAAF helicopters were deployed in Rhodesia. Within No. 7 Squadron, the SAAF Alouettes were designated as belonging to Alpha Flight.

South Africa


The Alouette III helicopter served for 44 years and flew more than 346.000 hours in the South African Air Force (SAAF). The official withdrawal of Alouette III in SAAF took place on 30 June 2006 at Swartkop in Pretoria.

Switzerland


In 2004, the Swiss Armed Forces announced the retirement of the Alouette III from front-line service by 2006 and entirely by 2010.

Variants

  • SA 316A : the first production version. Original designation SE 3160.
  • SA 316B : powered by a 425 kW (570 shp) Turboméca Artouste IIIB turboshaft engine, with strengthened main and tail rotor for greater performance. The SA 316B was built under licence in India as the HAL Chetak, and again under licence in Romania as the IAR 316.
  • HAL
    Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
    Hindustan Aeronautics Limited based in Bangalore, India, is one of Asia's largest aerospace companies. Under the management of the Indian Ministry of Defence, this state-owned company is mainly involved in aerospace industry, which includes manufacturing and assembling aircraft, navigation and...

     Chetak
    : Indian production version of the SA 316B.
  • IAR 316
    IAR 316
    -References:* http://avia.russian.ee/helicopters_eng/iar-317.php* https://sites.google.com/site/stingrayslistofrotorcraft/iar-317-airfox-See also:...

    : Romanian production version of the SA 316B.
  • The SA 319B was a direct development of the SA 316B, it was powered with a 649 kW (870 shp) Turboméca Astazou
    Turbomeca Astazou
    |-References:...

     XIV turboshaft engine, but it was derated to 447 kW (660 hp).
  • The SA 316C was powered by a Turbomeca Artouste IIID turboshaft engine. The SA 316C was only built in small numbers.
  • G-Car and K-Car : Helicopter gunship versions for the Rhodesian Air Force. The G-Car was armed with two side-mounted Browning .303 or a single 7.62mm MAG machine guns. The K-Car was armed with a 20 mm MG 151 cannon
    MG 151 cannon
    The MG 151 was a 15 mm autocannon produced by Waffenfabrik Mauser starting in 1940. It was in 1941 developed into the 20 mm MG 151/20 cannon which was widely used on many types of German Luftwaffe fighters, fighter bombers, night fighters, ground attack and even bombers as part of or as...

    , fitted inside the cabin, firing from the port side of the helicopter.
  • SA.3164 Alouette-Canon: Modified in 1964 as a gunship version armed with a 20mm gun in the nose and external hardpoints for missiles mounted on each side of the fuselage. Only one prototype was built.
  • IAR 317 Airfox: A Romanian helicopter gunship project based on the IAR 316. Only three prototypes were ever built.
  • Atlas XH-1 Alpha: A Two-seat attack helicopter project. It was used in the development of the Denel AH-2 Rooivalk.


When used as an aerial ambulance, the Alouette III can accommodate a pilot, two medical attendants and two stretcher patients.

Current military operators


  • Albanian Air Force
    Albanian Air Force
    The Albanian Air Force is the national Air Force of the Albanian military. Currently it operates under the Albanian Joint Forces Command and it is regrouped in the Albanian Air Brigade...

     – (SA 319)

  • People's Air and Air Defence Force of Angola
    People's Air and Air Defence Force of Angola
    The National Air Force of Angola is the air branch of the Armed Forces of Angola.FAN was established, after the independence of Angola from Portugal, on January 21, 1976 as the People's Air and Air Defence Force of Angola and initially made use of the...

     20× SA316Bs

  • Austrian Air Force
    Austrian Air Force
    The Austrian Air Force is a component part of the Austrian armed forces .-History:The Austrian Air Force was formed in May 1955 by the victorious Allied powers, subject to restrictions on its use of guided missiles...

     Twenty-six (12× SE3160, 14× SA316B).

  • Bangladesh Air Force
    Bangladesh Air Force
    The Bangladesh Air Force , is the air arm of the Bangladesh Armed Forces. Bangladesh Air Force currently employs more than 22,000 personnel including 600+ Pilots.-History:...

     Four former Indian Air Force HAL Chetak

  • Belgian Navy
    Belgian Navy
    The Marine Component of the Belgian Army, formerly the Belgian Naval Force, is the naval service of Belgium.-Early history:The Belgian Navy was created as the Marine Royale in 1831. This force has operated in various forms throughout Belgian history.When after the Belgian Revolution, the country...

     3× SA316B

  • Burma Air Force Fourteen (13× SE3160 and 1× SE316B)

  • Four (1× SE3160 and 3× SA316Bs)

  • Cameroon Air Force
    Cameroon Air Force
    The Cameroon Air Force is the air force of the African nation of Cameroon. The Cameroon Air Force, along with the Cameroon Army, the Cameroon Navy , the National Gendarmerie, and the Presidential Guard make up the Cameroonian Armed Forces.The Cameroon Air Force theoretically possesses a fairly...

     5× SA319

  • Chad Air Force
    Chad Air Force
    The Chadian Air Force, in French Force Aérienne Tchadienne, was formed in 1961 as the Escadrille Nationale Tchadienne , and was given its current name in 1973...

     Ten former French SE3160s

  • Congolese Air Force
    Congolese Air Force
    The Former Congolese Air Force was a military force in the Republic of the Congo-Brazzaville. Political tensions have now declined with the fall of the Cold War in Africa and most of the fighters were scrapped in 2001.-Former Cold War air force:...

     4× SA316B

  • Côte d'Ivoire Air Force
    Côte d'Ivoire Air Force
    The Air Force of Cote d'Ivoire was established in 1961 and it is organised on a French model and operates comparatively modern fleet.After achieving independence from France in 1960, Cote d'Ivoire maintained strong links with France through bilateral defence agreements. French training and...

     Four (3× SE3160, 1× SA316B)

  • Dominican Air Force
    Dominican Air Force
    The Air Force of the Dominican Republic or Fuerza Aérea Dominicana, is one of the three branches of the Military of the Dominican Republic, together with the Army and the Navy.- History :...

     1× SE3160

  • Ecuadorian Air Force
    Ecuadorian Air Force
    The Ecuadorian Air Force is the Air arm of the Military of Ecuador and responsible for the protection of the Ecuadorian airspace.-Mission:To develop the military air wing, in order to execute institutional objectives which guarantee sovereignty and contribute towards the nation's security and...

     (SA 316)
  • Ecuadorian Army
    Ecuadorian Army
    The Ecuadorian Army is the land component of the Ecuadorian Armed Forces. Its 24,135 soldiers are sensibly deployed in relation to its military doctrine...


  • Air Force of El Salvador
    Air Force of El Salvador
    The Salvadoran Air Force the air force of the Armed Forces of El Salvador, and is independent from the army and navy. It was formed on 20 March 1923 during a period of heavy interest in aviation in El Salvador. In 1947 after signing the treaty of Rio...

     1× SA316B

  • Military of Equatorial Guinea
    Military of Equatorial Guinea
    The military of Equatorial Guinea was reorganized in 1979. It consists of approximately 2,500 service members. The army has almost 1,400 soldiers, the police 400 paramilitary men, the navy 200 service members, and the air force about 120 members. There is also a Gendarmerie, but the number of...


  • Ethiopian Air Force
    Ethiopian Air Force
    The Ethiopian Air Force is the air arm of the Ethiopian National Defense Forces and is tasked with protecting the air space, providing support to the ground forces as well as assisting during national emergencies.- Early years :...

     Eleven (5× SE3160 & 6× Romanian-built SA316B).

  • French Navy
    French Navy
    The French Navy, officially the Marine nationale and often called La Royale is the maritime arm of the French military. It includes a full range of fighting vessels, from patrol boats to a nuclear powered aircraft carrier and 10 nuclear-powered submarines, four of which are capable of launching...

     23 in active service
  • Sécurité Civile
    Sécurité Civile
    Operating for the French Ministry of the Interior, the Direction de la Défense de la Sécurité Civile is a French Government civil defence agency, employing some 2,500 civilian and military personnel over 60 sites...

     Six (SA316)

  • Gabonese Air Force Five (1× SE3160, 1× SA316B, 3× SA319B)

  • Ghana Air Force
    Ghana Air Force
    The Ghana Air Force is the air force of the African nation of Ghana. The GAF, along with the Ghanaian Army and Navy, make up the armed forces of Ghana which are controlled by that nation's Ministry of Defence....

     4× SA316B

  • Hellenic Naval Aviation
    Hellenic Navy
    The Hellenic Navy is the naval force of Greece, part of the Greek Armed Forces. The modern Greek navy has its roots in the naval forces of various Aegean Islands, which fought in the Greek War of Independence...

     Two SA319B for rotary flying training

  • Guinean Air Force 1× SA316B

  • Military of Guinea-Bissau
    Military of Guinea-Bissau
    The Armed Forces of Guinea-Bissau consist of an Army, Navy, Air Force and paramilitary forces. A 2008 United Nations Development Programme census estimated that there were around 4,000 personnel in the Armed Forces. An earlier CIA World Fact Book figure was 9,250...

     (SA 316)



  • Indian Air Force
    Indian Air Force
    The Indian Air Force is the air arm of the Indian armed forces. Its primary responsibility is to secure Indian airspace and to conduct aerial warfare during a conflict...

     87+ (55× French-built SE3160 and SA316B, 32+ Indian-built SA319B Chetak)
  • Indian Navy
    Indian Navy
    The Indian Navy is the naval branch of the armed forces of India. The President of India serves as the Commander-in-Chief of the Navy. The Chief of Naval Staff , usually a four-star officer in the rank of Admiral, commands the Navy...

     18+ (7× French-built SE3160, 7× French-built SA316B plus Indian built Chetaks)
  • Indian Army
    Indian Army
    The Indian Army is the land based branch and the largest component of the Indian Armed Forces. With about 1,100,000 soldiers in active service and about 1,150,000 reserve troops, the Indian Army is the world's largest standing volunteer army...

     over 120 in active service.

  • Indonesian Army
    Indonesian Army
    The Indonesian Army , the land component of the Indonesian Armed Forces, has an estimated strength of 328,517 regular personnel. The force's history began in 1945 when the Tentara Keamanan Rakyat "Civil Security Forces" served as paramilitary and police.Since the nation's independence struggle,...

     7× SE3160

  • Libyan Arab Jamahiriyah Army Aviation
    Libyan Army
    In 2009 the IISS estimated that the Ground Forces of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya numbered 25,000 with an additional, estimated, 25,000 conscripts...

     13× SA316B, three later to Malta

  • Malagasy Air Force
    Military of Madagascar
    The Military of Madagascar is made up of the People's Armed Forces and the National Gendarmerie. The IISS detailed the armed forces in 2007 as including an Army of 12,500+, a Navy of 500, and a 500-strong Air Force...

     Two (SE3160, one former French Army)

  • Malawi Army Air Wing
    Military of Malawi
    The Armed forces of Malawi are the state military organisation responsible for defending Malawi. They originated from British colonial units formed before independence in 1964.-Army structure:...

     One SA316

  • Royal Malaysian Air Force 26× SA316B and 10× SA319B (not including 7× SA316B transferred from Republic of Singapore Air Force
    Republic of Singapore Air Force
    The Republic of Singapore Air Force is the air arm of the Singapore Armed Forces. It was first established in 1968 as the Singapore Air Defence Command...

     in 1978/9), 20× SA316Bs were later transferred to the Malaysian Army
    Malaysian Army
    The Malaysian Army is the land component of the Malaysian Armed Forces. Steeped in British Army traditions, the Malaysian Army does not carry the title ‘royal’ as do the Royal Malaysian Air Force and the Royal Malaysian Navy...

    's Air Wing

  • Armed Forces of Malta
    Armed Forces of Malta
    The Armed Forces of Malta is the name given to the combined armed services of Malta. The AFM is a brigade sized organisation consisting of a headquarters and three separate battalions, with minimal air and naval forces.- Headquarters, AFM :...

     3× SA316B (all former Libyan Air Force).

  • Mexican Air Force
    Mexican Air Force
    The Mexican Air Force is the aviation branch of the Mexican Army and depends on the National Defense Secretariat . Since 2008, its commander is Gen...

     3× SE3160
  • Mexican Naval Aviation
    Mexican Navy
    The Mexican Navy is the naval branch of the Mexican military responsible for conducting naval operations. Its stated mission is "to use the naval force of the federation for the exterior defense, and to help with internal order". The Navy consists of about 56,000 men and women plus reserves, over...

     Five (SA319B)

  • Royal Moroccan Gendarmie Air Squadron
    Royal Moroccan Gendarmerie
    The Moroccan Royal Gendarmerie is the Gendarmerie body of Morocco, and comes under the authority of the Ministry of Defence.-History:...

     2× SA316B.

  • Mozambique Air Force
    Military of Mozambique
    The Armed Forces for the Defence of Mozambique or FADM were formed in mid August 1994 from the previous warring factions of the Mozambique Civil War, which ended in 1992...

     4× SA316B (former Portugal Air Force).

  • Namibian Air Force
    Namibian Air Force
    The Namibia Air Force was commissioned on 13 March 2005 at Grootfontein Air Base.The policy, mission statements and concept of operations envisage the development of an Air Force to operate in support of the Army and the Navy....


  • Nepal Royal Flight
    Nepalese monarchy
    The Kingdom of Nepal , also referred to as the Gorkha Kingdom, was formed in 1768 by the unification of Nepal. Founded by Prithvi Narayan Shah The Kingdom of Nepal , also referred to as the Gorkha Kingdom, was formed in 1768 by the unification of Nepal. Founded by Prithvi Narayan Shah The Kingdom...

     1× SE3160
  • Air Battalion, 11th Brigade Nepal Army
    Nepalese Army Air Service
    Nepal has no separate Air Force but flies several aircraft within Nepalese Army Service, also known as the Nepal Army Air Wing. It was formed in 1960s, but finally became an air force unit in 1979. It is now again a part of the Army and has very limited combat capabilities. The main objective of...

     At least 4 HAL Cheetak.

  • Royal Netherlands Air Force
    Royal Netherlands Air Force
    The Royal Netherlands Air Force , Dutch Koninklijke Luchtmacht , is the military aviation branch of the Netherlands Armed Forces. Its ancestor, the Luchtvaartafdeling of the Dutch Army was founded on 1 July 1913, with four pilots...

     4 in active service for VIP transport

  • Nicaraguan National Guard Two

  • Pakistan Air Force
    Pakistan Air Force
    The Pakistan Air Force is the leading air arm of the Pakistan Armed Forces and is primarily tasked with the aerial defence of Pakistan with a secondary role of providing air support to the Pakistan Army and the Pakistan Navy. The PAF also has a tertiary role of providing strategic air transport...

     Thirteen (7× SE3160, 4× SA316B, 2 x SA319B plus local production)
  • Pakistan Army
    Pakistan Army
    The Pakistan Army is the branch of the Pakistani Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. The Pakistan Army came into existence after the Partition of India and the resulting independence of Pakistan in 1947. It is currently headed by General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani. The Pakistan...

     Twelve (11× SE3160, 1× SA316B)
  • Pakistan Navy
    Pakistan Navy
    The Pakistan Navy is the naval warfare/service branch of the Pakistan Armed Forces. Pakistan's Navy is responsible for Pakistan's coastline along the Arabian Sea and the defense of important civilian harbors and military bases...

    • Pakistan Naval Air Arm
      Pakistan Naval Air Arm
      The Pakistan Naval Air Arm is the naval aviation branch of the Pakistan Navy.The Naval Air Arm is tasked to carry out air surveillance, limited aerial warfare, and reconnaissance operations...

       (SA316, SA319)

  • People's Liberation Army Ground Force
    People's Liberation Army Ground Force
    The People's Liberation Army Ground Force is the land-based service branch of the People's Liberation Army. Its regular forces consist of 1.7 million personnel, with an additional 800,000 personnel in reserve, making it the largest active standing army in the world, and second largest in terms of...


  • Peruvian Air Force
    Peruvian Air Force
    The Peruvian Air Force is the branch of the Peruvian Armed Forces tasked with defending the nation and its interests through the use of air power...

     Twelve (4× SE3160, 8× SA316C)
  • Peruvian Naval Aviation
    Peruvian Naval Aviation
    The Peruvian Naval Aviation is the air branch of the Peruvian Navy. It was originally formed in 1919 as the Naval Aviators Corps but was merged in 1932 with the Peruvian Army Aviation. The service was recreated under its current name on July 3, 1963...

     6× SA316B


  • Portuguese Air Force
    Portuguese Air Force
    The Portuguese Air Force is the air force of Portugal. Formed on July 1, 1952, with the Aeronáutica Militar and Aviação Naval united in a single independent Air Force, it is one of the three branches of the Portuguese Armed Forces and its origins dates back to 1912, when the military aviation...

     12× SA316B

  • Romanian Air Force
    Romanian Air Force
    The Romanian Air Force is the air force branch of the Romanian Armed Forces. It has an air force headquarters, an operational command, four air bases and an air defense brigade...

     (IAR 316) 8× IAR316B in service for rotary flying training

  • Rwanda Air Force
    Rwandan Defence Forces
    The Rwanda Defence Forces is the national army of Rwanda. Largely composed of former Rwandan Patriotic Army fighters, it comprises The High Command Council of the Rwanda Defence Forces; the General Staff of the Rwanda Defence Forces; the Rwanda Land Force; the Rwanda Air Force; and ...

     2× SE3160

  • Royal Saudi Air Force
    Royal Saudi Air Force
    The Royal Saudi Air Force , is the aviation branch of the Saudi Arabian armed forces. The RSAF has developed from a largely defensive military force into one with an advanced offensive capability...

     Five (4× SE3160, 1× SA316B)


  • Republic of Korea Navy
    Republic of Korea Navy
    The Republic of Korea Navy or the ROK Navy is the branch of the South Korean armed forces responsible for conducting naval operations and amphibious landing operations. The ROK Navy includes the Republic of Korea Marine Corps, which is a quasi-autonomous organization...

     (SA319B) One Alouette III on display at the War Memorial of Korea, Seoul
    Seoul
    Seoul , officially the Seoul Special City, is the capital and largest metropolis of South Korea. A megacity with a population of over 10 million, it is the largest city proper in the OECD developed world...

    , Republic of Korea

 South Vietnam
  • Vietnam Air Force
    Vietnam Air Force
    The Vietnam Air Force began with a few hand-picked men chosen to fly alongside French pilots during the State of Vietnam era. It eventually grew into the world’s sixth largest air force at the height of its power, in 1974...

     (SA319)

(SA316)
  • Military of Suriname
    Military of Suriname
    After the creation of the Statute of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the Royal Netherlands Army was entrusted with the defence of Suriname, while the defence of the Netherlands Antilles was the responsibility of the Royal Netherlands Navy. The army set up a separate Troepenmacht in Suriname...

     (SA316)

 Swaziland
  • Umbutfo Swaziland Defence Force 3 ex SAAF
    South African Air Force
    The South African Air Force is the air force of South Africa, with headquarters in Pretoria. It is the world's second oldest independent air force, and its motto is Per Aspera Ad Astra...


  • Tunisian Air Force
    Tunisian Air Force
    The Tunisian Air Force is one of the branches of the Tunisian Armed Forces.-Air Force:The Tunisian Air Force was established in 1959, three years after Tunisia regained its independence from France. It took deliveries of its first aircraft, eight Saab 91 Safirs, in 1960, later to be complemented...

     Eight (4× SE3160, 4× SA316B)

  • Venezuelan Air Force 20× c
    • Special Helicopter Squad of 1st Corps of AF and AD used two SA 316 helicopters.

  • Zaire Air Force
    Air Force of the Democratic Republic of the Congo
    The Air Force of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, also known as the Democratic Republic of the Congo Air Force , is the air force branch of the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo...

     Ten (SE3160 and SA316B)

  • Zambian Air Force
    Zambian Air Force
    The Zambian Air Force is the air force of Zambia.Following the creation of the Republic of Zambia in 1964, Zambian military avaition was organized as the Zambia Air Wing which lasted until 1968. The Zambian Air Force was then established....


  • Air Force of Zimbabwe
    Air Force of Zimbabwe
    The Air Force of Zimbabwe is the air force of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces. It was known as the Rhodesian Air Force until 1980. The Air Force of Zimbabwe saw service in the Mozambican Civil War in 1985 and the Second Congo War of 1998–2001....

     – (SA 316)

Former military operators



  • Argentine Naval Aviation
    Argentine Naval Aviation
    The Argentine Naval Aviation is the naval aviation branch of the Argentine Navy and one of its four operational commands...

     Fourteen (3× SE3160, 7× SA316B and 4× SA319B). Last surviving aircraft retired on 2 December 2010.

  • Royal Australian Air Force
    Royal Australian Air Force
    The Royal Australian Air Force is the air force branch of the Australian Defence Force. The RAAF was formed in March 1921. It continues the traditions of the Australian Flying Corps , which was formed on 22 October 1912. The RAAF has taken part in many of the 20th century's major conflicts...

     – Three Alouette IIIs (RAAF serials A3-165 to 167) were in service from 1964 to 1967. The helicopters were used for general transport and support duties at the Woomeria Rocket Range in South Australia.

(Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi , literally Father of Gazelle, is the capital and the second largest city of the United Arab Emirates in terms of population and the largest of the seven member emirates of the United Arab Emirates. Abu Dhabi lies on a T-shaped island jutting into the Persian Gulf from the central western...

)
 Republic of Upper Volta
 Bophuthatswana
  • Bophuthatswana Air Force
  • Upper Volta Air Force
    Military of Burkina Faso
    The branches of Burkina Faso's military include its Army, Air Force, National Gendarmerie, National Police, and People's Militia. Being a landlocked country, Burkina Faso has no navy....

     Two SA316B

 Biafra
  • Biafran Air Force operated few helicopters.

  • Chilean Navy
    Chilean Navy
    -Independence Wars of Chile and Peru :The Chilean Navy dates back to 1817. A year before, following the Battle of Chacabuco, General Bernardo O'Higgins prophetically declared "this victory and another hundred shall be of no significance if we do not gain control of the sea".This led to the...

     10× SA319Bs, retired in 1991

  • Danish Navy
    Royal Danish Navy
    The Royal Danish Navy is the sea-based branch of the Danish Defence force. The RDN is mainly responsible for maritime defence and maintaining the sovereignty of Danish, Greenlandic and Faroese territorial waters...

     8× SE3160

  • French Air Force
    French Air Force
    The French Air Force , literally Army of the Air) is the air force of the French Armed Forces. It was formed in 1909 as the Service Aéronautique, a service arm of the French Army, then was made an independent military arm in 1933...

     Entire fleet retired
  • French Army Light Aviation
    French Army Light Aviation
    The French Army Light Aviation is the aviation service of the French Army.-History:The French Army Light Aviation was established on 22 November 1954 for observation, reconnaissance, assault and supply duties.-Composition:...

     Entire fleet retired

  • Royal Hong Kong Auxiliary Air Force
    Royal Hong Kong Auxiliary Air Force
    The Royal Hong Kong Auxiliary Air Force was an auxiliary unit of the United Kingdom Royal Air Force, based in Hong Kong. In preparation for the transfer of sovereignty from the United Kingdom to the People's Republic of China, the unit was disbanded on 1 April 1993.Although technically an armed...

     Three (2× SE3160, 1× 316B)

  • Iraq Air Force 44× SA316C



  • Irish Air Corps
    Irish Air Corps
    The Air Corps is the air component of the Defence Forces of Ireland providing support to the Army and Naval Service, together with non-military air services such as search and rescue and the Ministerial Air Transport Service...

     Eight (3× SE3160 and 5× SA316B) in service between 1963 and 2007.

  • Jordanian Air Force 16× SA316B

  • Lebanese Air Force
    Lebanese Air Force
    The Lebanese Air Force is the aerial warfare branch of the Lebanese Armed Forces. The seal of the air force is constituted of a Roundel with two wings and a Lebanese Cedar tree, surrounded by two laurel leaves on a blue background.-History:...

     Eighteen (11× SE3160, 7× SA316B) retired from military service; currently being used for crop spraying

 Rhodesia
  • Rhodesian Air Force



  • Republic of Singapore Air Force
    Republic of Singapore Air Force
    The Republic of Singapore Air Force is the air arm of the Singapore Armed Forces. It was first established in 1968 as the Singapore Air Defence Command...

     (8× SA316B delivered in 1968/9, one preserved at RSAF Museum while remaining 7 were retired and transferred to Royal Malaysian Air Force in 1978/9)

 South Africa (SA 316)
  • South African Air Force
    South African Air Force
    The South African Air Force is the air force of South Africa, with headquarters in Pretoria. It is the world's second oldest independent air force, and its motto is Per Aspera Ad Astra...

     120 (58× SE3160, 40× SA316B plus others)

  • Spanish Air Force
    Spanish Air Force
    -The early stages:Hot air balloons had been used with military purposes in Spain as far back as 1896. In 1905, with the help of Alfredo Kindelán, Leonardo Torres y Quevedo directed the construction of the first Spanish dirigible in the Army Military Aerostatics Service, created in 1896 and located...

     5× SA319B
  • Spanish Army
    Spanish Army
    The Spanish Army is the terrestrial army of the Spanish Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. It is one of the oldest active armies - dating back to the 15th century.-Introduction:...

     3× SA319B



  • Swiss Air Force
    Swiss Air Force
    The Swiss Air Force is the air component of the Swiss Armed Forces, established on July 31, 1914, as part of the Army and as of January 1966 an independent service.In peacetime, Dübendorf is the operational Air Force HQ...

     Total of 84: 24× SE3160 first delivered in 1964 (minus 6 accident write-off
    Write-off
    The term write-off describes a reduction in recognized value. In accounting terminology, it refers to recognition of the reduced or zero value of an asset. In income tax statements, it refers to a reduction of taxable income as recognition of certain expenses required to produce the income...

    s) plus 60× SA316B first delivered in 1972 (minus 13 accident write offs). In late August 2010, 10 airframes were donated to Pakistan's National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) for search and rescue
    Search and rescue
    Search and rescue is the search for and provision of aid to people who are in distress or imminent danger.The general field of search and rescue includes many specialty sub-fields, mostly based upon terrain considerations...

     (SAR) work. On 10 December 2010, all the remaining 55 airframes (of which 20 were still airworthy) were retired at Alpnache Aerodome, replaced by 20× Eurocopter EC635 P2+

Civilian operators



  • ALFA Helicópteros

  • Air Walser srl
  • GIANA Helicopter – RTI

  • Tokyo Fire Department
    Tokyo Fire Department
    The is a fire department headquartered in Ōtemachi, Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan. The TFD was formed on March 7, 1948 and is responsible for protecting the Tokyo Metropolis Area. The Fire Department is the largest urban fire department in the world. Providing services to the 23 Wards of Tokyo and parts...

  • Some Local firefighting service

  • Askari Aviation
    Askari Aviation
    Askari Aviation is based in Rawalpindi, Punjab, Pakistan. Askari Aviation was established in 1995, to maintain, operate and market aircraft and helicopters....


  • Flight for Life
    Flight For Life
    Flight for Life is a prehospital care service with many bases of operation across the United States. Flight for Life is primarily known for its emergency medical helicopter transport, but also operates a fleet of land vehicles and fixed wing aircraft for the transport of critically ill patients to...


Specifications (SA 316B)




See also


External links