Defense

November 7, 2012

Upgraded Apache helicopter OK’d for production

Army photograph
The Apache Block III helicopter, unveiled in October 2011, has been re-designated the E model. The Apache Project Office announced the name change during an Oct. 24, 2012, press conference in Washington, D.C.

The Defense Acquisition Board decision regarding full-rate production for the Apache Block III helicopter program was announced Oct. 24, by Army officials at a briefing in Washington, D.C.

Additionally, Apache project manager Col. Jeffrey Hager confirmed that the Apache Block III is being re-designated as an AH-64E model.

The announcement event was attended by 20 media members representing national and industry related publications.

According to the Apache Project Office, the Defense Acquisition Board, or DAB, granted approval for full-rate production, or FRP, in August and the Air Force communicated the model designation change in a September memo to the Army. Actions are under way to begin implementation of the E model designation for subsequent use by the military and industry.

“The DAB’s decision really secured Apache production for the next several years,” Hager said. “We’ve got fiscal requirements, but securing that production through a full-rate production decision was just huge for this program. It’s probably the single largest decision that we’ve had since Block I’s and Block II’s went into production. It’s that monumental.”

One of the other key components, Hager said, that resulted in the DAB decision is the fact that the Block III had been designated an ACAT C program.

“We’re no longer a D program and therefore don’t need DOD oversight. Our Army acquisition executive, Ms. Heidi Shyu, is in charge of the Apache program and the development production that we have for Block III as we go forward from this point. So that was a big designation for us,” Hager said.

The designation of the E model, he added, accurately recognizes the aircraft’s advancements including an Improved Drive System, increased engine capabilities, technologically advanced composite main rotor blades and sensor enhancements.

“At the end of the day, the only real measure of how well a system is performing falls to the user and how easy or difficult the aircraft is to maintain,” said Col. John Lynch, Attack/Reconnaissance TRADOC capabilities manager. “Basically, the Block III exceeded expectations that were laid out on the sustainment side.”

Upgrades to the aircraft over previous models include advanced rotor blades and significantly increased aircraft handling, performance and agility at higher altitudes. Situational awareness is enhanced with electro-optical and infrared sensors for the operational benefit of aviators and battlefield commanders.

“The Apache fleet continues to do very well in Afghanistan and Kuwait,” Lynch said. “It’s has maintained an over 80 percent readiness rate while averaging more than 60 flight hours per month. We’re almost at one million combat flight hours with the Apache.”

First delivered in October 2011, Apache Block III helicopters are in production at the Boeing Company in Mesa, Ariz. Fielding of the AH-64E will occur over the next decade.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines July 2, 2015

News: F-35 loses dogfight to fighter jet from 1980s – A new report alleges that an F-35A was defeated by the very aircraft it is meant to replace.   Business: South Korea selects Airbus for $1.33 billion tanker contract – European aerospace giant Airbus won a $1.33 billion deal June 30 to supply air refueling...
 
 
U.S. Chamber of Commerce photograph

Boeing, Embraer to collaborate on ecoDemonstrator technology tests

U.S. Chamber of Commerce photograph Frederico Curado, president & CEO of Embraer, and Marc Allen, president of Boeing International, at the Brazil-U.S. Business Summit in Washington, D.C. The event occurred during an offici...
 
 
Untitled-2

Tactical reconnaissance vehicle project eyes hoverbike for defense

The U.S. Army Research Laboratory, or ARL, has been exploring the tactical reconnaissance vehicle, or TRV, concept for nearly nine months and is evaluating the hoverbike technology as a way to get Soldiers away from ground thre...
 

 
Air Force photograph by SSgt. William Banton

Upgraded AWACS platform tested at Northern Edge

Air Force photograph by SSgt. William Banton Maintenance crew members prepare an E-3G Sentry (AWACS) for takeoff during exercise Northern Edge June 25, 2015. Roughly 6,000 airmen, soldiers, sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen ...
 
 
LM-Legion

Lockheed Martin’s Legion Pod™ takes to skies

Lockheed Martin photograph by Randy Crites Lockheed Martin’s Legion Pod recently completed its first flight test, successfully tracking multiple airborne targets while flying on an F-16 in Fort Worth, Texas. Legion Pod was in...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SSgt. Marleah Robertson

First Marine graduates Air Force’s F-35 intelligence course

Air Force photograph by SSgt. Marleah Robertson Marine Corps 1st Lt. Samuel Winsted, an F-35B Lightning II intelligence officer, provides a mock intelligence briefing to two instructors during the F-35 Intelligence Formal Train...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>