Sunday, December 17, 2017
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Two more refurbished Mi-24s for Senegal

A Senegalese Mi-24.Senegal has taken delivery of two more Mi-24 attack helicopters that were refurbished by Poland’s WZL-1 aviation company.

Wojskowe Zakłady Lotnicze Nr 1 (WZL-1) said the two helicopters were transferred to the Senegalese Air Force on 30 November after being fully overhauled. They were flown to Dakar aboard an An-124 cargo aircraft operated by Antonov Airlines.

Senegal is believed to have ordered three Mi-24Vs in 2015, which were acquired from Slovakia. The first Mi-24 to be overhauled by WZL-1 was delivered in February this year. WZL-1 also provided technical training for Senegalese personnel on the helicopters.

In addition to the three refurbished Hinds, Senegal in 2007 received two Mi-24/35Ps in 2007 after placing an order from Russia in 2005. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), Senegal also received two Mi-171s from Russia. Other helicopters received in the last decade include one Bell 205, two Mi-2s and two Bell 206Ls. These join one AS355 Twin Squirrel, one Gazelle and two SA 330 Pumas.

In June last year it was announced that Senegal was upgrading its Mi-24 attack helicopters with Israeli Controp DSP-HD electro-optical systems. Controp said it had received several contracts to upgrade helicopters with the DSP-HD system, and has installed it on a United Nations Mi-17, Mi-24, Bell 407 and EC-145/H145. Controp released a photo showing a Senegalese Mi-24 fitted with the system.

The 29 kg DSP-HD comprises of a day camera, daylight spotter, laser rangefinder or laser pointer. The daylight spotter can be replaced with an infrared camera.

WZL-1 specialises in the overhaul and upgrade of Mi-2/8/14/17/24 series helicopters as well as W-3 Sokol and SH-2G helicopters. It was formed in 1945 and has been active for the last 70 years. It recently went from being a state owned enterprise to a public company. It recently refurbished two Mi-24Vs for Cameroon, which were delivered in 2016.