The Boeing AH-64 Apache, is a four-blade, twin-engine attack helicopter with a tail wheel-type landing gear arrangement, and a tandem cockpit for a two-man crew. It features a nose-mounted sensor suite for target acquisition and night vision systems. It is armed with a 30 mm (1.18 in) M230 Chain Gun carried between the main landing gear, under the aircraft’s forward fuselage. It has four hardpoints mounted on stub-wing pylons, typically carrying a mixture of AGM-114 Hellfire missiles and Hydra 70 rocket pods. The AH-64 has a large amount of systems redundancy to improve combat survivability. The Boeing AH-64 Apache originally started as the Model 77 developed by Hughes Helicopters for the United States Army’s Advanced Attack Helicopter program to replace the AH-1 Cobra. The prototype YAH-64 was first flown on 30 September 1975. The U.S. Army selected the YAH-64 over the Bell YAH-63 in 1976, and later approved full production in 1982. After purchasing Hughes Helicopters in 1984, McDonnell Douglas continued AH-64 production and development. The helicopter was introduced to U.S. Army service in April 1986. The first production of The Boeing AH-64 Apache, Longbow, an upgraded Apache variant, was delivered to the Army in March 1997. Production has been continued by Boeing Defense, Space & Security; over 2,000 AH-64s have been produced to date. The U.S. Army is the primary operator of The Boeing AH-64 Apache, it has also become the primary attack helicopter of multiple nations, including Greece, Japan, Israel, the Netherlands and Singapore; as well as being produced under license in the United Kingdom as the Agusta Westland Apache. The Boeing AH-64 Apache have served in conflicts in Panama, the Persian Gulf, Kosovo, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Israel used the Apache in its military conflicts in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip; British and Dutch Apaches have seen deployments in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Into production Museum of Military Memorabilia Website
In 1981, three pre-production Boeing AH-64 Apache were handed over to the U.S. Army for Operational Test II. The Army testing was successful, but afterward it was decided to upgrade to the more powerful T700-GE-701 version of engine, rated at 1,690 shp (1,260 kW).The Boeing AH-64 Apache. was named the Apache in late 1981, keeping with the Army’s traditional use of American Indian tribal names for its helicopters and it was approved for full-scale production in 1982. In 1983, the first production helicopter was rolled out at Hughes Helicopter’s facility at Mesa, Arizona. Hughes Helicopters was purchased by McDonnell Douglas for $470 million in 1984. The helicopter unit later became part of The Boeing Company with the merger of Boeing and McDonnell Douglas in August 1997. In 1986, the incremental or flyaway cost for the AH-64A was $7M and the average unit cost was approximately $13.9M based on total costs.
Avionics and targeting
One of the revolutionary features of the Apache was its helmet mounted display, the Integrated Helmet and Display Sighting System (IHADSS) among its capabilities, either the pilot or gunner can slave the helicopter’s 30 mm automatic M230 Chain Gun to their helmet, making the gun track head movements to point where they look. The M230E1 can be alternatively fixed to a locked forward firing position, or controlled via the Target Acquisition and Designation System (TADS). On more modern AH-64s, the TADS/PNVS has been replaced by Lockheed Martin’s Arrowhead (MTADS) targeting system.
Armaments and configurations
|Mission||Hellfire||30 mm rounds||Hydra 70||Maximum speed (knots)||Rate of climb (feet/min)||Endurance (hours)|
The AH-64 is adaptable to numerous different roles within its context as Close Combat Attack (CCA), it has a customizable weapons loadout mounted on stub-wings for the role desired. In addition to the 30 mm M230E1 Chain Gun, the Apache carries a range of external stores on its stub-wing pylons, typically a mixture of AGM-114 Hellfire anti-tank missiles, and Hydra 70 general-purpose unguided 70 mm (2.756 in) rocket Starting in the late 1980s, the Stinger and AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missiles and the AGM-122 Sidearm anti-radiation missile were evaluated for use upon the AH-64. The Stinger was initially selected over the AIM-9, but the U.S. Army is considering the Starstreak air-to-air missile instead. External fuel tanks can also be carried on the stub wings to increase range and mission time. The stub-wing pylons have mounting points which make maintenance easier; these mountings can be used to secure personnel to the wings for transport for emergencies. Stinger missiles are more used by non-U.S. Apaches because foreign forces do not have as many other aircraft for air superiority to control the skies. The AH-64E Apache has the ability to control unmanned aerial vehicles, used by the U.S. Army to perform aerial scouting missions previously performed by the OH-58 Kiowa. Apaches can request to take control of an RQ-7 Shadow or MQ-1C Grey Eagle from ground control stations to safely scout via datalink communications. There are four levels of UAV interoperability (LOI): LOI 1 indirectly receives payload data; LOI 2 receives payload data through direct communication; LOI 3 deploys the UAV’s armaments; and LOI 4 takes over flight control. UAVs can search for enemies and, if equipped with a laser designator, target them for the Apache or other friendly aircraft.
In 1991 after Operation Desert Storm, the AH-64B was a proposed upgrade to 254 AH-64As. The upgrade would have included new rotor blades, a Global Positioning System (GPS), improved navigation systems and new radios. Congress approved $82M to begin the Apache B upgrade. The B program was canceled in 1992. The radio, navigation, and GPS modifications, were later installed on most A-model Apaches through other upgrades.
Additional funding from Congress in late 1991 resulted in a program to upgrade AH-64As to an AH-64B+ version. More funding changed the plan to upgrade to AH-64C. The C upgrade would include all changes to be included in the Longbow except for mast-mounted radar and newer −700C engine versions. However, the C designation was dropped after 1993. With AH-64As receiving the newer engine from 1990, the only difference between the C model and the radar-equipped D model was the radar, which could be moved from one aircraft to another; thus the decision was made to simply designate both versions “AH-64D”.
The AH-64D Apache Longbow, is equipped with a glass cockpit and advanced sensors, the most noticeable of which being the AN/APG-78 Longbow millimeter-wave fire-control radar (FCR) target acquisition system and the Radar Frequency Interferometer (RFI), housed in a dome located above the main rotor. The radome’s raised position enables targets detection while the helicopter is behind obstacles (e.g. terrain, trees or buildings). The AN/APG-78 is capable of simultaneously tracking up to 128 targets and engaging up to 16 at once, an attack can be initiated within 30 seconds. A radio modem integrated with the sensor suite allows data to be shared with ground units and other Apaches; allowing them to fire on targets detected by a single helicopter.
Formerly known as AH-64D Block III, in 2012, it was redesignated as AH-64E Guardian to represent its increased capabilities. The AH-64E features improved digital connectivity, the joint tactical radio system, more powerful T700-GE-701D engines with upgraded face gear transmission to accommodate more power, capability to control Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAVs), full IFR capability, and improved landing gear. New composite rotor blades, which successfully completed testing in 2004, increase cruise speed, climb rate, and payload capacity.[Deliveries began in November 2011, full rate production was approved on 24 October 2012.[ 634 AH-64Ds will be upgraded to AH-64E standard; a production run of 56 new-build AH64Es will start in 2019/20. Changes in production lots 4 through 6 shall include a cognitive decision aiding system, new self-diagnostic abilities, and Link-16 data-links. The updated Longbow radar has an oversea capacity, potentially enabling naval strikes; an AESA radar is under consideration. The E model is to be fit for maritime operations.
In 2014, Boeing conceptualized an Apache upgrade prior to the introduction of the U.S. Army’s anticipated attack version of the Future Vertical Lift aircraft, forecast to replace the Apache by 2040. The conceptual AH-64F would have greater speed via a new 3,000 shp turboshaft engine from the improved turbine engine program, retractable landing gear, wingstubs to offload lift from the main rotor during cruise, and a tail rotor that can articulate 90 degrees to provide forward thrust.
During the 1980s Naval versions of the AH-64A for the United States Marine Corps and Navy were examined. Multiple concepts were studied with altered landing gear arrangements, improved avionics and weapons. Funding for a naval version was not provided, the Marine Corps continued to use the AH-1. The Canadian Forces Maritime Command also examined a naval Apache. In 2004, British Army AgustaWestland Apaches were deployed upon the Royal Navy’s HMS Ocean, a Landing Platform Helicopter, for suitability testing; there was U.S. interest in the trials. During the 2011 military intervention in Libya, the British Army extensively used Apaches from HMS Ocean. In 2013, U.S. 36th Combat Aviation Brigade AH-64Ds were tested on a variety of U.S. Navy ships.
Here are some AH-64D Apache – Longbow Apache AH-1Z Viper Videos
AH-64D Apache Longbow Attack Helicopter Demo . Boeing AH-64 Apache
Unique AH-64D Apache Longbow demonstration performed by Longbow test pilot, Chief Warrant Officer Dan Edwards in April of 2000 at Phoenix Mesa Gateway Airport. Edwards, assigned to Boeing’s, Mesa Arizona-based Defense Contract Management Command, demonstrates the Apache’s agility, power, and futuristic weapons and defense systems, including up-close, inflight video of the Apache showing off the movement of the 30MM chain gun, which can fire 625 rounds per minute. The gun’s sights are attached to the helmet of the weapons officer, manning the front seat of the Apache. As he moves his head back and forth, watch as the gun mirrors his head movements, tracking targets. The U.S. Army is the primary operator of the AH-64, however it has also become the primary attack helicopter of several nations it has been exported to, including the United Kingdom, Israel, Japan, and the Netherlands. U.S. AH-64s have served in conflicts in Panama, Persian Gulf War, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Israel has made active use of the Apache in its military conflicts in Lebanon and Gaza Strip; while several coalition allies have deployed their AH-64s in Afghanistan and Iraq. Armament : * Guns: 1× 30 × 113 mm (1.18 × 4.45 in) M230 Chain Gun with 1,200 rounds * Rockets: Hydra 70 FFAR rockets * Missiles: combination of AGM-114 Hellfire, AIM-9 Sidewinder, and AIM-92 Stinger Speed : * Never exceed speed: 197 knots (227 mph, 365 km/h) * Maximum speed: 158 knots (182 mph, 293 km/h) * Cruise speed: 143 knots (165 mph, 265 km/h) * Service ceiling: 21,000 ft (6,400 m) minimum loaded * Rate of climb: 2,500 ft/min (12.7 m/s) * Range: 257 nmi (295 mi, 476 km) with Longbow radar mast.
AH-64 Apache – Agility Demo & Firing Rockets A close air support exercise with AH-1Z Viper helicopters was held by U.S. Marines at Mount Barrow, Chocolate Mountain Aerial Gunnery Range in California on October 2, 2014. Film Credits: L.Cpl. Jordan Walker
AH-1Z Viper • Close Air Support Core Avionics Navigation and digital map system • Enhanced GPS/INS • Air data • TACAN • ADF Communications suite • RT-1794 Fully integrated VHF/UHF EW and self-protection • Radar warning • CHAFF/FLIR • Missile warning • Laser warning Full glass cockpit with HOCAS controls • 1,024 x 768 pixel displays • Full access/control at all locations Expansion Options • Added pilot night vision system • Incorporation of fire-control radar • Implementation of Longbow missile • Image capture, compression and data link AH-1Z Unique Wing stores weapons management and control • Laser guided HELLFIRE • Sidewinder • 2.75 in. rockets • Bombs/flares 20mm Gatling gun • Digital gun turret and A/G-A/A ballistics Target sighting system • 3rd generation FLIR • Color TV • Stabilized turret Integrated helmet display and sighting system • Visor projected • Integral I2 cameras • Accurate DC magnetic tracker UH-1Y Unique Communication suite expansion • Added VHF/UHF • Expansion to SATCOM Night targeting and pilot sensor
Northrop Grumman – H-1 Integrated Avionics Systems For AH-1Z Viper & UH-1Y Venom Helicopters.