A new Aircraft Flotilla Unit is set up: The 12th Squadron.

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

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Paint colors of the new Spanish Navy H-135 P3H helicopter.
Paint colors of the new Spanish Navy H-135 P3H helicopter.
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Paint colors of the new Spanish Navy H-135 P3H helicopter.
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Coat of Arms of the 12th Squadron (pending approval).

On February 6, the Chief of Staff of the Spanish Navy instructed the creation the 12th Squadron of the Aircraft Flotilla.

The squadron will operate 7 H-135 P3H helicopters built by Airbus Helicopters (Spain) to be delivered to the Navy as of October 2023 and until October 2025. This helicopter fleet will be used for training and support purposes and will replace the old H-500s of the 6th Squadron which have effectively served the Navy for more than 50 years.

The H-135 P3H is a light, two-engine, multi-purpose helicopter with capacity for 2 pilots and up to 5 passengers. The aircraft’s advanced avionics permits the use of night vision goggles and has the capability to use an electro-optic system, rescue crane, surface and all-weather radar and a barycentric hook. All these features will enhance the number of missions which the H-500 could not perform. In this naval version the main rotor can be manually folded.

The coat of arms of the 12th Squadron includes a White Owl, a bird that traditionally exemplifies wisdom and its motto in Latin reads: ‘DISCE ET VOLA’ (Learn and Fly).

In keeping with the standard call signs used by the Spanish Navy Aircraft Flotilla, the 12th Squadron will use the term ‘Nival’.

Ten people from the 6th and 3rd Squadrons have already been transferred to the 12th Squadron’s staff. The first naval operations with initial take offs and landings on naval platforms will take place in the first half-year of 2024. Their IOC (Initial Operational Capability) will be achieved in the second semester of that year.


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