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KAI inks a $1.8bn deal with South Korea for 100 KUH-1 helicopters

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World Defense & Security News - South Korea
 
 
KAI inks a $1.8bn deal with South Korea for 100 KUH-1 helicopters
 
South Korea's Marine Corps will deploy 30 amphibious helicopters in a move to bolster its maritime defense capabilities, military officials said Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2016. Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI), the country's sole aircraft manufacturer, has signed a US$525 million deal with the Defense Acquisition Program Administration to gradually deliver the 30 amphibious choppers to the Marine Corps by 2023, the aircraft company said in a statement.
     
KAI inks a1 8bn deal with South Korea for 100 KUH 1 helicopters 640 001A ROKA KUH-1 Surion utility helicopter
(Credit: KAI)
     
The amphibious helicopter will be built based on the KUH-1 Surion utility helicopter which was locally developed by the government and private experts for six years from 2006 in a US$1 bn project.

The Surion-based amphibious helicopter is best suited for naval operations as the main rotor is foldable and the body is coated with anti-corrosive agents, the statement said.

On the same day, KAI has inked another deal worth US$1.24bn to build about 70 Surion helicopters by 2022 for the Army. It expects to be able to locally deliver 10 more Surions for the eight years through 2030, it said.

KAI has already delivered about 100 Surions to the military and government agencies in the past three years.

The aircraft company aims to export the Surion helicopter to make inroads into the world's helicopter market in the long term, a KAI spokesman said.

"Countries such as Indonesia and Peru have shown interest in buying the Korean-made helicopter due to proven safety and performance," he said.

The KUH-1 Surion can carry up to 16 troops in an operational range of 530 km. It is powered by two Hanwha Techwin T700-ST-701K turboshaft, a variant of the T700-GE-701C engine.

(Source: Yonhap)