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Kamov Ka-27 (Helix)

Anti-Ship / Multi-role Naval Helicopter

Not built in large numbers, the Soviet-era Kamov Ka-27 Helix naval helicopter nonetheless became a featured rotary-wing platform for several militaries of the world.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 5/29/2019
The Kamov Ka-27 Helix naval helicopter was developed as a direct successor to the aging Kamov Ka-25 line in service with the Soviet Navy - both were primarily used to fulfill the Anti-Ship (AS) role but were eventually branched out to undertake other roles as needed including Search and Rescue (SAR), Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), and general over-water transport to serve Soviet Navy ships. As seen in previous Kamov helicopter designs, the Ka-27 did not showcase a conventional tail rotor but was instead driven through two counter-rotating, three-bladed main rotors, one seated atop the other - this action counteracted the torque generated by one rotor assembly over the other.

The Ka-27 shares the same overall dimensions as its Ka-25 predecessor which means that very little in the way of onboard ship storage was revised to accommodate the Ka-27 upon acceptance into the Soviet Navy role. The Helix was crewed by three standard operating personnel that included the pilot, a "tactical coordinator", and an Anti-Surface Weapons Coordinator. There was also seating for up to sixteen passengers which lent the Ka-27 Helix well for the transport role when the interior is equipped as such (Ka-29TB).

The Ka-27 saw a first flight on December 24th, 1973 and was formally introduced during 1982 and some 267 examples were ultimately realized. These went on to serve both Soviet and Russian navies as well as the Ukrainian and Indian navies overseas. One of the Ka-27s offshoots became the modern Ka-31 which arrived in 1995 and serves in the Airborne Early Warning (AEW) role.

Variants of the Ka-27 were led by the Ka-25-2 prototype. The Ka-27K served as the ASW prototype which produced the Ka-27PL ("Helix-A") ASW production model. The Ka-27PS ("Helix-D") became a dedicated SAR model and the Ka-27PV was its armed form. The PL was exported as the Ka-28. The Ka-29TB was developed as an assault transport with seating for sixteen passengers. A civilian market form became the Ka-32 and various sub-variants of this mark were later released.

Military operators (beyond the Soviet Union/Russia) of the Ka-27 have gone on to include Algeria, China, India, Portugal, Syria, Ukraine, Vietnam, South Korea, and the former Yugoslavia. Civilian operators have been recognized in Brazil, Canada, Switzerland, Japan, and Portugal.

The base Ka-27 is powered by 2 x Isotov TV3-117V turboshaft engines delivering 2,230 horsepower each. Performance includes a maximum speed of 170 miles per hour, a cruising speed in the 130 mph range, a service range of 610 miles, and a service ceiling of up to 16,400 feet.

Typical armament has been 1 x torpedo while the helicopter can also dispense depth charges and sonobouys as required.

Program Updates

February 2018 - The Ka-32A11BC model will see some seven total exports in 2018.

May 2019 - Russian Helicopters (Kamov) is proposing a plan to upgrade/modernized in-service Ka-32 Helix utility helicopters. The upgrade is designated Ka-32A11M. Changes to the existing design would include a completely new digital cockpit sporting three MFDs as well as faster-processing computers. Klimov VK-2500PC-02 FADEC engines are proposed with the package.


Active, In-Service
[ 267 Units ] :
Kamov - Soviet Union / Russian Helicopters - Russia
National flag of Algeria National flag of Brazil National flag of Bulgaria National flag of Canada National flag of China National flag of India National flag of Japan National flag of Laos National flag of North Korea National flag of Portugal National flag of Russia National flag of South Korea National flag of Soviet Union National flag of Switzerland National flag of Syria National flag of Ukraine National flag of ; Vietnam National flag of Yugoslavia Algeria; Brazil; Bulgaria; Canada; China; India; Japan; Laos; Portugal; Ukraine; Russia; North Korea; South Korea; Soviet Union; Syria; Switzerland; Ukraine; Yugoslavia; Vietnam
- Anti-Ship
- Navy / Maritime
- Transport
37.07 ft (11.3 m)
52.17 ft (15.9 m)
17.72 ft (5.4 m)
(Showcased structural dimension values pertain to the Kamov Ka-27PL production model)
Empty Weight:
13,448 lb (6,100 kg)
27,778 lb (12,600 kg)
(Diff: +14,330lb)
(Showcased weight values pertain to the Kamov Ka-27PL production model)
2 x Klimov (Isotov) TV3-117V turboshaft engines driving 2 x three-blade main counter-rotating rotor systems.
(Showcased powerplant information pertains to the Kamov Ka-27PL production model)
Maximum Speed:
143 mph (230 kph; 124 kts)
Service Ceiling:
16,404 feet (5,000 m; 3.11 miles)
Maximum Range:
497 miles (800 km; 432 nm)
2,460 ft/min (750 m/min)
(Showcased performance values pertain to the Kamov Ka-27PL production model; Compare this aircraft entry against any other in our database)
1 x Aerial Torpedo.

Depth charges or sonobouys as needed.
(Showcased armament details pertain to the Kamov Ka-27PL production model)
Ka-27 "Helix" - Base Series Designation
Ka-25-2 - Prototype
Ka-25RLD - Radar picket model based on Ka-31 EWA platform delivered in 2010.
Ka-27M - Modernized model with new radar and other systems and sensors.
Ka-27PL "Helix-A" - Anti-Submarine Warfare Variant featuring nose-integrated search radar system, disposable sonar buoys and a dipping sonar system array.
Ka-27PLM - Upgrade featuring a newly updated sensor system; Improved TV3-117MVA-SB3 turboshaft powerplant.
Ka-27PS "Helix-D" - Navy Search-and-Rescue Model (SAR) featuring an externally-mounted winch.
Ka-28PV - Armed Ka-27PS
Ka-28 "Helix-A" - Export Model Designation with some of the Ka-27 base systems removed.
Ka-28TB "Helix-B" - Assault transport model
Ka-29 - Assault Transport Model
Ka-29PK - Armed Variant with provision for the
Ka-32 - Civilian market model
Ka-32A - Civilian Transport Version of the base Ka-27 model.
Ka-32A1 - Fire-fighting platform
Ka-32A2 - Law enforcement variant; searchlight equipped.
Ka-32A4 - Search and Rescue (SAR) model
Ka-32A7 - Armed Ka-27PS model
Ka-32A11BC - Europe, China and Canada certified model; Klimov TV3-117MA series engines; modernized digital cockpit.
Ka-32A12 - Swiss market model
Ka-32A11M - Proposed upgrade/modernization of existing Ka-32 systems; FADEC Klimov VK-2500PC-02 engines, glass cockpit, improved digital processing.
Ka-32C - Export model.
Ka-32M - Proposed model with TV3-117MVA-SB3 series engines.
Ka-32S "Helix-C" - Maritime /coast guard model.
Ka-32T "Helix-C" - Utility transport / passenger hauler.
Ka-32K - Flying crane platform.

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