Sud-Aviacion SE.3200 / SA.3210 "Frelon"


The Frelon is a large helicopter of conventional layout, powered by three shaft-turbine engines mounted above its cabin. The prototype, which flew for the first time on June 10, 1959, has three 750-800hp Turbomeca Turmo IIIB engines, of which two are side-by-side in front of the rotor shaft arid, the third behind the rotor shaft. Production models will have Turmo IIIC engines of 1,000-1,100hp each. All fuel is carried externally in tanks mounted to each side of the cabin.

Both the main and tail rotors are four-bladed. There is a variable-incidence tail control surface on each side of the rear fuselage. Standard equipment includes dual controls, radio and full night-flying equipment, with provision for an automatic pilot.

The Frelon is suitable for a wide variety of civil or military applications. Its cabin is ventilated and sound-proofed and measures 7m in length, with a width of 1.90m, and head-room of 1.83m. The entire tail assembly swings to starboard to permit direct loading of freight and vehicles into the cabin. Normal entry is via large sliding doors on each side of the fuselage.

In its main military versions, the Frelon will carry 24 fully-equipped troops for 100km, 15 stretcher patients and two medical attendents for 400km, or 2,000kg of freight internally or externally for 300km. In an air/sea rescue role it can retrieve 10 persons by means of its power-operated hoist at a distance of 300km from its base. An armed version can carry four Nord S.S.11 wire-guided missiles under its nose.

The naval version can carry out a three-hour search with sonar equipment, or carry 1,400kg of weapons over a range of 370km. It can exert a pull of 3,000kg for minesweeping or towing disabled ships.

As a commercial vehicle, the Frelon can be equipped with comfortable accommodation for 20-24 passengers, with the same freight-carrying capabilities as the military version.

Jane's All the World's Aircraft, 1959-60

Sud-Aviacion SE.3200 / SA.3210

Sud-Aviation was formed on 1 March 1957 from the Sud-Ouest and Sud-Est Aviation companies. One of its first major projects was the Frelon, a large helicopter of conventional layout powered by three Turbomeca Turmo III turboshaft engines. The first SE.3200 prototype flew on 10 June 1959. The planned production version was the SA.3210 powered by three 932kW Turmo IIIC engines. The Frelon was developed into the larger Super Frelon.

M.Taylor "Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation"

Technical data for S.E.3200 Frelon

Main rotor diameter: 15.0m, overall length, blades folded: 14.90m, overall width, blades folded: 5.20m, height: 4.70m, weight empty: 4500kg, max useful load: 3500kg, normal loaded weight: 7500kg, max loaded weight: 8000kg, max ferrying range: 1300km