The Peruvian Air Force is set to take delivery of the first batch of new Mi-171Sh multi-purpose helicopters from Russia in November 2014, the country’s Defence Minister Pedro Cateriano has revealed.
Cateriano was quoted by IHS Janes as saying that the initial batch will include eight helicopters, while the remaining 16 helicopters will be handed over in 2015.
A total of 24 Mi-171Sh helicopters were purchased by the Peruvian Ministry of Defence (MoD) under a $406m contract from Russian state-arm exporter Rosoboronexport in December 2013.
The contract also covered construction of a maintenance and repair centre for the helicopters in Peru by 2016, which will enable the country to provide services to other countries in the region that own Russian helicopters and aircraft like the Su-25 fighter, Lenta.ru reports.
Supplied along with a flight simulator, a training package and related equipment, the helicopters are expected to replace the eight Mi-17 transport helicopters purchased by Peru in 1984, and will be used to counter drug trafficking and terrorism, as reported earlier by Kommersant.
Powered by two Klimov TV3-117VM turboshaft engines, the Mi-171Sh is a derivative of the Mi-171 helicopter, and is used for the airlift of assault forces and cargo transport at a maximum altitude of 6,000m on the battlefield.
The helicopter can also be configured to conduct troop fire support, air-to-surface attack, escort of the military columns, medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) and combat search-and-rescue (CSAR) operations in all weather conditions.
Image: The Mi-171Sh helicopter is primarily used for the airlift of assault forces and cargo transport missions. Photo: courtesy of jno.