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Alouettes & Lamas

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  • Heliaction Lama in the Caucasus Mountains in March 2019


    • 50th Anniversary of the First Flight of the Lama

      The Lama first flew on 17th March 1969 with the maiden flight carried out by test pilot Roland Coffignot accompanied by engineer Gérard Boutin. This flight was performed in SA315A F-BPXS (001).

      SA315A F-BPXS cn.001 (Photo: Sud Aviation Archives)

      SA315A Lama F-BPXS (cn.001) as seen at La Grande-Motte in southern France (Photo from the Daniel Liron collection courtesy of Pierre Gillard)

      SA315A Lama F-BPXS (cn.001) during its test flying

      A combination of the airframe of an Alouette II with the dynamic components of the Alouette III, the Lama performed its first flight with Roland Coffignot and Gérard Boutin.

      Until the development of the Ecureuil B3, the SA315 Lama was the king of mountain work, thanks to its amazing power to weight ratio.

      A total of 447 Lamas were delivered, of which 86 are still in service. The Lama has accrued over 3,512,100 flight hours.

      — Airbus

      F-BPXS as seen in Switzerland in 1975 having been upgraded to a 315B (Photo by E. Devaud)