The Sud-Ouest SO.1221 Djinn (alternatively written S.O.1221) is a French two-seat light helicopter designed and manufactured by aircraft manufacturer Sud-Ouest (SNCASO), which was later merged into Sud Aviation. It was the first production French helicopter, as well as being one of the first practical European helicopters to be produced. The Djinn was also the first rotorcraft to harness tip-jet propulsion to enter production.
The Djinn was developed to function as a practical implementation of the earlier experimental Sud-Ouest Ariel rotorcraft. Atypically, the rotor was driven by compressed-air jets at the end of each blade, which had the benefit of eliminating the need for an anti-torque tail rotor.
On 2 January 1953, the proof-of-concept SO.1220 performed its maiden flight; it was followed by the first of the SO.1221 Djinn prototypes on 16 December 1953. During the subsequence test program, one of the prototypes was recorded as having achieved a world altitude record.
Having been suitably impressed by the performance of the Djinn during testing, both the French Army and the German Army chose to procure the type, as well as a number of other customers.
Operationally, the type was used for various purposes, including liaison, aerial observation, training, and casualty evacuation.
The Djinn was phased out of production during the 1960s as a consequence of the greater success of the comparably more conventional Aérospatiale Alouette II and Aérospatiale Alouette III helicopters.