The first two Leonardo AW119 Koala helicopters arrived yesterday afternoon at the Air Base No. 11 in Beja.
This is the photographic record that will be part, of course, of the days of the History of the Portuguese Air Force.
The beginning of the more than half-century cycle of the old "zingarelhos" (Sud Aviation SA316 Alouette III), the beginning of operations of a new, multi-purpose rotary wing aircraft in the national air weapon.
As we mentioned earlier, this fleet has debuted a new numbering sequence starting at the digit "2", as opposed to "1" since the update of the Portuguese military aircraft registration system of 1993.
The first two Koala AW119 cells delivered have tail number 29701 and 29702, following the predicted sequence of the EH101 (196XX) fleet, but not in the first digit, where it is the first fleet to start at 2.
In the passage of testimony, one guesses and it will certainly be difficult to beat the Alouette III, in longevity and fidelity.
ALIII airframes 19302, 19376 and 19401 are still operational, and are expected to remain operational until the AW119 fleet reaches full operating capacity.