Air International 2020-09
J.Moralez, S.Rivas - Blue Amazon warriors
A Brazilian Navy Sikorsky S-70B Seahawk, local designation SH-16, from the 1st Anti-Submarine Helicopter Squadron (HS-1) at Sao Pedro de Aldeia Naval Air Base.
The Sikorsky Seahawk was projected to require little ground infrastructure to operate, including climbing to reach important systems and carry out inspections.
Both HS-1 hangars were modernised to receive the fleet of six helicopters and related equipment.
After the return of each mission, the MH-16 Seahawk must be washed to clean off the saltwater so as not to damage the sensors and structure of the helicopter.
The AN/AAS-44 V EO/IR sensor provides both conventional and infrared images up to 24.8 miles (40km) from the target. Close to the taxi and landing light is one of the Electronic Support Measures ESM LN-100 antennas.
Although limited by internal space, the squadron can conduct search and rescue missions using the external hoist, which is certified for up to 600lbs (272 kilos).
The combination of sensors and avionics allow missions to be carried out by day, night and in adverse weather conditions.
A sensor operator crew conducts an external walkaround prior to an ASW night mission.
With the S-70B Seahawk, the squadron resumed flying around the clock, both in training and operational missions. Some of the night ASW missions were of up to three hours.
The MH-16 Seahawk constantly operates on board the Navy’s main fleet in open sea, day and night.
The full glass cockpit of the S-70B Seahawk allows more accurate situational awareness and agility.
The pilot monitors the MH-16 parameters during a hover to track submarines in an ASW mission. The on-board system controls the hover automatically.
The tiny space at the cabin compartment is divided among two sensors operators, the HELRAS sonar and a series of avionics consoles.
The APS-143 and AN/AAS-44V operator located in the centre of the helicopter.
The sonar operator station, on the left-hand side of the MH-16.