Romania’s IAR 330 Receives A Comprehensive Upgrade From Elbit Systems
To enhance the operational capabilities of the Romanian Navy, the IAR 330 helicopter will be integrated with the Elbit Systems SPECTRO XR payload.
According to international media reports, Elbit Systems has awarded four contracts to provide solutions to the Romanian armed forces for upgrades on the country’s IAR 330 helicopters. Upgrades will include electronic warfare suites, electro-optical infrared payloads and Brightnite™ systems for the IAR 330 helicopters.
To enhance the operational capabilities of the Romanian Navy, the IAR 330 helicopter will be integrated with the Elbit Systems SPECTRO XR payload. It is an advanced solution for sophisticated intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance capabilities. It also provides continuous target scanning capabilities for enhanced situational awareness.
The IAR 330 is a licence-built version of the Aérospatiale SA 330 Puma helicopter, manufactured in Romania in 1974. On 22 October 1975, the first Romanian-built Puma conducted its maiden flight. By 1980, around 25 IAR 330s had been produced for both domestic and overseas customers. Various oversea countries opted to procure the IAR 330, including Pakistan, Ivory Coast, United Arab Emirates, and Sudan. The largest operator of the type would be the Romanian Air Force, who initially used it primarily as a utility transport.
The IAR-330 has a payload capacity of 1,000 kg. Helicopter provides accommodation for up to 16 troops, plus the crew of three. The helicopter is powered by two Turboméca Turmo IV-CA turboshaft engines. Eachdevelops a power output of 1,400 shp. The service ceiling is 6,000m. The helicopter can climb at a rate of 11.2m/s. It has a maximum speed of 276km/h and a range of 592km.
IAR-330 SOCAT upgrade, developed in cooperation with Elbit Systems, fitted with advanced avionics, optronic reconnaissance and anti-armor system, nose-mounted 20-mm cannon, eight Raphael Spike-ER anti-tank guided missiles and unguided rocket launchers. This helicopter was introduced in 1999. A total of 24 Romanian helicopters were upgraded to this standard and are used as anti-tank gunships.
In the latest upgrade contract from Elbit Systems, will supply a comprehensive electronic warfare (EW) suite including Radar Warning Receiver (RWR), Laser Warning System (LWS), Infrared Missile Warning System (IR MWS) and Counter Measure Dispensing System (CMDS). The suites will be supplied to a domestic supplier for the installation and integration onboard six PUMA helicopters with an option for an additional six in the future. It will be carried out over a period of three years.