SA 341/342 Gazelle
The Aérospatiale Gazelle was developed in the mid-60s by the French Army to be a multi-role scout/light transport/light support/anti-tank helicopter. The design was soon licensed to the British who developed their own variants for the RAF, Royal Navy, Royal Marines and Army Air Corps. Many other countries have since bought and deployed the Gazelle. For the light support and anti-tank role, the French Gazelles are due to be phased out in favor of the Tiger attack helicopter.
The Gazelle is a small, agile and fast helicopter. The SA 341 set 3 world helicopter speed records. It can be flown by a single pilot and carry up to 5 passengers. Like all light helicopters, the Gazelle relies on speed and mobility at low level to evade detection and enemy fire, to which the lightly armored Gazelle is vulnerable. Several British Gazelles were shot down by ground-based small arms fire during the Falklands conflict.
SA 342 Gazelle Specifications
British Special Forces (14 Intelligence Company) used the Gazelle's thermal imaging missile sight to track terrorist suspects in Northern Ireland.
A Serbian Gazelle fires an anti-tank missile. Wire-guided missiles spool out a thin control wire behind them through which the guidance system sends flight adjustment commands. Note the 4 flares burning around the missile's tail - these ensure the missile stays visible to the gunner.
royal marines gazelle