Click here to return to the homepage
Register Forgotten? | Logout

Home Products Consulting Services Search Intel Centres My Account  
Defence | Transport | Aerospace | Security | Business | Regional News
Sitemap | Contact Us | Help
  Land Forces | Naval Forces | Air Forces

An article from...

13 October 2000

US Army designations: AH-64A and D
Israel Defence Force name: Pethen (Cobra)

Day/night, twin-engined, attack/reconnaissance helicopter.

Original Hughes Model 77 entered for US Army advanced attack helicopter (AAH) competition; first flights of two development prototype YAH-64s 30 September and 22 November 1975; details of programme in 1984-85 and earlier Jane's; selected by US Army December 1976; named Apache late 1981.
        Deliveries started 26 January 1984; 800th delivered July 1993; 900th in October 1995, at which time US Army had ordered 821 (excluding prototypes) with export contracts totalling 104 AH-64As; latter total increased to 213 (116 AH-64A; 97 AH-64D) by July 1995. Last of 821 (excluding prototypes) AH-64As delivered to US Army on 30 April 1996; aircraft concerned was production vehicle 915, and manufacture of AH- 64A variant terminated with completion of 937th example (for Egypt), in November 1996; details of initial service use in 1999-2000 and earlier Jane's. Delivery of 1,000th Apache (including AH-64D rebuilds) effected on 30 March 1999.
        Boeing awarded four year, US$15.9 million, contract on 27 May 1998 to design, manufacture and flight test new centre fuselage section incorporating advanced composites materials; Phantom Works responsible for design leadership, with support from Boeing facilities at Long Beach, Philadelphia and St Louis. If successful, new section from rear of aft cockpit to just behind engines will be simpler to manufacture as well as lighter and more durable than existing all-metal structure.
        In separate development, on 5 October 1998, a modified AH-64D Apache Longbow prototype made initial flight with Rotorcraft Pilot's Associate (RPA) advanced cockpit management system. Also developed by Phantom Works over 60 month period, under terms of US$80 million advanced technology demonstration contract, this featured updated controls and displays, including Boeing-developed four-axis, full authority, advanced digital flight control system. Flight and mission data presented to pilots on three large multipurpose colour displays; RPA also features advanced data fusion and an advanced pilotage system, as well as the ability to recognise and respond to verbal commands. Company flight trials continued throughout remainder of 1998, with test aircraft then scheduled to visit US Army's Yuma Proving Grounds for demonstration flights in January-February 1999.

Current Versions
AH-64A: Produced for US Army and export; 937 built. First 603 had two 1,265 kW (1,696 shp) T700-GE-701 engines. Total of 530 US Army examples to be upgraded to AH-64D. Retrofit from 1993 with SINCGARS secure radios and GPS; first installed in Apaches of 5-501 Aviation Regiment on deployment to Camp Eagle, South Korea.
        AH-64B: Cancelled in 1992. Was planned near-term upgrade of 254 AH-64As with improvements derived from operating experience in 1991 Gulf War, including GPS, SINCGARS radios, target handover capability, better navigation, and improved reliability including new rotor blades.
        AH-64C: Previous designation for upgrade of AH-64As to near AH-64D standard, apart from omission of Longbow radar and retention of -701 engines; provisions for optional fitment of both; Army requested draft proposal, August 1991; funding for two prototype conversions awarded in September 1992. With exception of AH-64Ds and resales, all remaining US Army AH-64As (then approximately 540) to have been modified. Designation abandoned late 1993.
        AH-64D Apache Longbow: Current improvement programme based on Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman joint venture development of mast-mounted AN/APG-78 Longbow millimetre-wave radar and Hellfire missile with RF seeker; Northrop Grumman has lead on Longbow with Lockheed Martin taking principal role for Hellfire. Programme also includes more powerful engines, larger generators, MIL-STD-1553B databus allied to dual 1750A processors, and a vapour cycle cooling system for avionics; early user tests completed April 1990.
Detailed description applies to AH-64D.
        Full-scale development programme, lasting 51 months, authorised by Defense Acquisition Board August 1990, but airframe work extended in December 1990 to 70 months to coincide with missile development; supporting modifications being incorporated progressively; first flight of AH-64A (82-23356) with dummy Longbow radome 11 March 1991; first (89-0192) of six AH-64D prototypes flown 15 April 1992; second (89-0228) flew 13 November 1992; fitted with radar in mid-1993 and flown 20 August 1993; No.3 (90-0324) flown 30 June 1993; No.4 (90-0423) on 4 October 1993; No.5 (85-25477; formerly AH-64C No.1) 19 January 1994 (first Apache with new Hamilton Standard lightweight flight management computer); No.6 (85-25408) flown 4 March 1994; last two mentioned lack radar. Following redesignation of AH-64C in late 1993, original plan was to convert 748 to AH-64D, although only 227 (original AH-64D total) to carry Longbow radar; subsequent review, revealed at start of 1999, proposes reducing total number of conversions to 530 and increasing purchase of Longbow radars to 500; these would equip regular Army units, with remaining 218 AH-64As of Army National Guard and Army Reserve undergoing service life extension programme. Decision still awaited in April 2000.
        Under original programme, AH-64D to equip 26 battalions, although this may be reduced to 16 of regular Army; three companies, each with eight helicopters, per battalion. Longbow can track flying targets and see through rain, fog and smoke that defeat FLIR and TV. RF Hellfire, which delivered to US Army from November 1996, can operate at shorter ranges; it can lock on before launch or launch on co-ordinates and lock on in flight; Longbow scans through 360 for aerial targets or scans over 270 in 90 sectors for ground targets; mast-mounted rotating antenna weighs 113 kg (250 lb). Longbow radar transmitter subject of redesign in late 1997 to overcome poor performance of some electrical components in low temperatures; eliminate lengthy and costly manual integration necessary to achieve required output; and avoid shortages of critical components which suppliers reported in 1995 that they would no longer provide. New transmitter meets or surpasses original specification and is fully interchangeable with original unit.
        Further modifications include `manprint' cockpit with large displays, air-to-air missiles, digital autostabiliser, integrated GPS/Doppler/INS/air data/laser/radar altimeter navigation system, digital communications, faster target handoff system, and enhanced fault detection with data transfer and recording. Cockpit displays initially monochrome, but these replaced by colour displays with effect from 27th production conversion; first flight of AH-64D with colour displays on 12 September 1997. AH-64D No.1 made first Hellfire launch on 21 May 1993; first RF Hellfire launch 4 June 1994; first demonstration of digital air-to-ground data communications with Symetrics Industries improved data modem, 8 December 1993.
        First preproduction AH-64D conversion completed remanufacture in September 1995; aircraft made successful first flight at Mesa on 29 September 1995.
        Advanced acquisition phase contract for remanufacture programme, worth US$279.6 million and covering 18 helicopters (later increased to 24), awarded on 14 December 1995; predated by arrival of first two AH-64As (85-25387 and 85-25394) at Mesa on 27 November 1995 for stripping to basic fuselage in readiness for start of remanufacture in early 1996. First fuselage moved to final assembly area on 15 August 1996; first flight (85-25387 with new identity 96-5001) 17 March 1997; formal roll-out at Mesa on 21 March.
        Multiyear contract, worth US$1.9 billion, covering 232 AH-64Ds (retrospectively including advanced acquisition aircraft) over five year period signed 16 August 1996; further 298 conversions to be acquired in follow-on multiyear contract covering FY01 to FY05. Initial contract also included 227 Longbow radars, 13,311 Hellfire missiles and 3,296 launchers. AH-64D deliveries to US Army began 31 March 1997 and total of 16 handed over by end November 1997. Delivery of 24th and last Lot 1 aircraft accomplished 4 March 1998, with US Army having accepted total of 48 by end of October 1998, when production rate was three per month; 100th remanufactured AH-64D delivered to US Army in early December 1999.
        Initial AH-64D battalion (1-227 AvRgt) at Fort Hood, Texas fully equipped by end July 1998 and attained combat-ready status on 19 November 1998, after eight month training programme at company and battalion level which included four live fire exercises and more than 2,500 flight hours. Second unit is 2-101 AvRgt at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, which certified as combat-ready on 28 October 1999; third will be 1-3 AvRgt at Hunter AAF, Fort Stewart, Georgia.
        Entire US Army fleet (743 helicopters) grounded at start of November 1999 to permit replacement of faulty hanger bearing assemblies in tail rotor system; initial inspection completed by mid-November revealed need to replace assemblies on up to 420 helicopters at estimated cost of about US$13.5 million. Priority given to overseas-based units, with entire rectification programme likely to mean that some Apaches could remain grounded for up to 10 months.
        GAH-64A: At least 17 AH-64As grounded for technical instruction.
        JAH-64A: Seven AH-64As for special testing, of which one reverted to standard.
        WAH-64D: British Army version with Longbow radar and two Rolls-Royce/Turbomeca RTM 322 turboshafts; see Westland entry in the UK section.

US Army 827 AH-64A (including six prototypes), of which last delivered 30 April 1996; see Programme and Current Versions for details. Confirmed export orders and firm commitments totalled 221 at end of 1999. Israel ordered 18 in March 1990; first two delivered 12 September 1990 to 113 Squadron, powered by T700-GE-701s; further 24 second-hand (including 18 US Army Europe AH-64As delivered in September 1993), for 113 and 127 Squadrons; first two units based at Ramon; deliveries to 190 Squadron at Ramat David, 1995. After rejecting purchase of new-build AH-64D Apache Longbow on cost grounds, Israel submitted formal request to US in fourth quarter of 1999 for upgrade of existing AH-64A to AH-64D; initial batch of 12 to be modified, with further 12 subject to option.
        Deliveries began in April 1993 to Saudi Arabia (12) and in 1994 to Egypt (24). Further orders from Greece (20) and United Arab Emirates (20), both in December 1991; six handed over to UAE on 30 October 1993; 14 followed in 1994. Greek deliveries from February 1995 for training in USA; initial six Apaches ferried to New Orleans, Louisiana, for shipment to Greece on 9 June 1995. Ten more ordered for UAE in June 1994; 12 more to Egypt approved early 1995. Additional four AH-64A requested by Greece in second quarter of 1999 at estimated cost of US$111 million, including spares, technical support and HADSS.
        Version of AH-64D Apache Longbow offered to British Army by consortium of McDonnell Douglas, Westland, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Shorts; UK announced order for 67 on 13 July 1995. Netherlands signed contract on 24 May 1995 for 30 Apaches for Nos. 301 and 302 Squadrons at Gilze-Rijen; radar not required at outset, but formal request made in November 1999; US Army provided 12 AH-64As for use by No. 301 Squadron on lease basis for period 1996-99; all delivered 13 November 1996. First AH-64Ds accepted by Netherlands at Mesa on 15 May 1998; No. 302 Squadron is expected to become operational at beginning of 2000, followed by No. 301 Squadron in 2003. Latest customer is Singapore, which selected AH-64D on 14 June 1999; total of eight to be acquired, with AGM-114K Hellfire 2 laser-guided missile, but lacking Longbow radar. Kuwait was authorised in late 1997 to receive 16 AH-64Ds under FMS programme; letter of acceptance due for signature in last quarter of 1998, but debate continued over inclusion of Longbow radar and deal had still to be finalised at end of 1999; proposed package will also include 384 Hellfire missiles (310 combat rounds, 50 dummies and 24 training rounds), plus spares, training, government and contractor support. AH-64D also candidate for sales to Australia, whose Project Air 87 calls for procurement of attack helicopter to replace Bell 206B and UH-1H in Army service; Turkey (up to 145); and South Korea, which initially needs 18 combat helicopters, but could eventually acquire total of 36 to 48. Japan, Norway, Spain and Sweden have also expressed interest in AH-64D.

Year Qty First aircraft
Prototypes     6 89-0192
Preproduction     2
FY96   24 96-5001
FY97   24 97-5025
FY98   44 98-5049
FY99   66 99-5093
FY00   74 00-5159
Total 240

Qty Remarks
US Army AH-64A
FY73      3 Prototypes
FY79      3 Preproduction
FY82     11
FY83     48
FY84   112
FY85   138
FY86   116
FY87   101
FY88     77
FY89     54
FY90   132
FY91     12
FY92     10
FY94     10
Subtotal   8271

Exports First aircraft and date
Israel      182 801 Sep 1990
Saudi Arabia      123 90-0291 Apr 1993
Egypt (Lot 1)      243 3701 Feb 1994
Egypt (Lot 2)      123 3725 1996
Greece      203 E-1001 Feb 1995
UAE (Lot 1)      203 050 Oct 1993
UAE (Lot 2)      103 070 1996
Netherlands      304 Q-01/98-0101 May 1998
UK      675 ZJ166 Sep 1998
Singapore        86
Subtotal    221
Total 1,048
1 530 to be remanufactured as AH-64D
2 AH-64A; further 24 obtained from US Army
3 AH-64A
4 Non-radar AH-64D; 12 US Army AH-64A operated during 1996-99 on lease pending delivery of AH-64D
5 WAH-64D
6 AH-64D

Lot FY              Qty First aircraft
US Export
- 73     31 73-22247
- 79     32 79-23257
  1 82   11 82-23355
  2 83   48 83-23787
  3 84 112 84-24200
  4 85 138 85-25351
  5 86 116 86-8940
  6 87 101 87-0407
  7 88   67 88-0197
  10 88-0275
  8 89   54   18 89-0192
  9 90   60     6 90-0280
10 90   72   36 90-0415
11 90/92   22   34 91-0112
12 94   103   10 94-0328
13 95   12 95-0108
- 98 et seq 1054 98-0101
Subtotals 827 221
Total 1,048 
Notes: 1Prototypes; 73-22247 was static test airframe
3Partial replacement for 24 transferred to Israel, 1993
4AH-64D/WAH-64D; all other aircraft are AH-64A version

New US$18 million. Longbow radar costs US$4 million (1996) without supporting modifications compared to US$14 million flyaway cost of AH-64A. Longbow R&D contract (for four prototypes) US$194.6 million. Programme cost (807 aircraft at 1991 values) US$1,169 million. Egyptian Lot 2 request costed at US$318 million for 12 Apaches plus four spare Hellfire launchers, thirty-four 70 mm (2.75 in) rocket launchers, six spare T700 engines, one spare TADS/PNVS system and miscellaneous spares. Planned sale to Kuwait of 16 AH-64Ds valued at US$800 million, including weapons, spares and support services.

Design Features
Modern, tandem-seat, armoured and damage-resistant combat helicopter; is required to continue flying for 30 minutes after being hit by 12.7 mm bullets coming from anywhere in the lower hemisphere plus 20; also survives 23 mm hits in many parts; target acquisition and designation sight (TADS) and pilot night vision sensor (PNVS) sensors mounted in nose; low-airspeed sensor above main rotor hub; avionics in lateral containers; chin-mounted Chain Gun fed from ammunition bay in centre-fuselage; four weapon pylons on stub-wings (six when air-to-air capability is installed); engines widely separated, with integral particle separators and built-in exhaust cooling fittings; four-blade main rotor with lifting aerofoil blade section and swept tips; blades can be folded or easily removed; tail rotor consists of two teetering two-blade units crossed at 55 to reduce noise; airframe meets full crash-survival specifications. Two AH-64s will fit in C-141, six in C-5 and three in C-17A.
        Main transmission, by Litton Precision Gear Division, can operate for 1 hour without oil; tail rotor drive, by Aircraft Gear Corporation, has grease-lubricated gearboxes with Bendix driveshafts and couplings; gearboxes and shafts can operate for 1 hour after ballistic damage; main rotor shaft runs within airframe-mounted sleeve, relieving transmission of flight loads and allowing removal of transmission without disturbing rotor; AH-64A has flown aerobatic manoeuvres and is capable of flying at 0.5 g.

Flying Controls
Fully powered controls with stabilisation and automatic flight control system; automatic hover hold; tailplane incidence automatically adjusted by Hamilton Sundstrand control to streamline with downwash during hover and to hold best fuselage attitude during climb, cruise, descent and transition.

Main rotor blades (by Tool Research and Engineering Corporation, Composite Structures Divisions) tolerant to 23 mm cannon shells, have five U-sections forming spars and skins bonded with structural glass fibre tubes, laminated stainless steel skin and composites rear section; blades attached to hub by stack of laminated steel straps with elastomeric bearings. Northrop Grumman produces all fuselages, wings, tail, engine cowlings, canopies and avionics containers.

Landing Gear
Menasco trailing arm type, with single mainwheels and fully castoring, self-centring and lockable tailwheel. Mainwheel tyres size 8.50-10, tailwheel tyre size 5.00-4. Hydraulic brakes on main units. Main gear is non-retractable, but legs fold rearward to reduce overall height for storage and transportation. Energy-absorbing main and tail gears are designed for normal descent rates of up to 3.05 m (10 ft)/s and heavy landings at up to 12.8 m (42 ft)/s. Take-offs and landings can be made at structural design gross weight on terrain slopes of up to 12 (head-on) and 10 (side-on).

Power Plant
Two General Electric T700-GE-701C turboshafts, each rated at 1,409 kW (1,890 shp) for 10 minutes, 1,342 kW (1,800 shp) for 30 minutes, 1,238 kW (1,660 shp) maximum continuous and 1,447 kW (1,940 shp) 2 minutes OEI. Engines mounted one on each side of fuselage, above wings, with key components armour-protected. Upper cowlings let down to serve as maintenance platforms.
        AH-64 modernisation may eventually lead to installation of new 2,237 kW (3,000 shp) engine; joint US Army/US Navy effort to prepare requirement for Common Engine Program (CEP) likely to result in adoption on H-60 series first, but Army expects to draw up operational requirements document for AH-64 during 2001 or 2002.
        Two crash-resistant fuel cells in fuselage, combined capacity 1,421 litres (375 US gallons; 312 Imp gallons). Modifications ordered September 1993 for carriage of four 871 litre (230 US gallon; 192 Imp gallon) Brunswick Corporation external tanks on 437 Apaches. Total internal and external fuel 4,910 litres (1,295 US gallons; 1,078 Imp gallons). New crashworthy, ballistically self-sealing internal auxiliary fuel tank entered evaluation phase in fourth quarter of 1997; tank holds 492 litres (130 US gallons; 108 Imp gallons) and is interchangeable with ammunition storage magazine, enabling all four weapons pylons to carry ordnance on long-range missions. Testing of preproduction system undertaken in 1998 in addition to formal test and qualification programme by US Army; total of 48 units ordered from Robertson Aviation in 1999. `Black Hole' IR suppression system protects aircraft from heat-seeking missiles: this eliminates an engine bay cooling fan, by operating from engine exhaust gas through ejector nozzles to lower the gas plume and metal temperatures.

Crew of two in tandem: co-pilot/gunner (CPG) in front, pilot behind on 48 cm (19 in) elevated seat. Crew seats, by Simula Inc, are of lightweight Kevlar. Northrop Grumman canopy, with PPG transparencies and transparent acrylic blast barrier between cockpits, is designed to provide optimum field of view. Crew stations are protected by Ceradyne Inc lightweight boron armour shields in cockpit floor and sides, and between cockpits, offering protection against 12.7 mm armour-piercing rounds. Sierracin electric heating of windscreen. Seats and structure designed to give crew a 95 per cent chance of surviving ground impacts of up to 12.8 m (42 ft)/s. Simula of Phoenix, Arizona, under contract by US Army to develop cockpit-airbag system; development phase was due to be completed in early 1997, but was cancelled in favour of modifications to gunner's sighting equipment to lessen risk of injury.

Honeywell totally integrated pneumatic system includes a shaft-driven compressor, air turbine starters, pneumatic valves, temperature control unit and environmental control unit. Fairchild Controls improved environmental control system comprises a distributed vapour-cycle cooling and heating unit, with two redundant systems incorporating dual-speed compressors, digital databus controllers and multiple heat exchangers, fans and control valves. Parker dual-hydraulic systems, operating at 207 bars (3,000 lb/sq in), with actuators ballistically tolerant to 12.7 mm direct hits. Redundant flight control system for both rotors. In the event of a flying control system failure, the system activates Honeywell secondary fly-by-wire control. Honeywell electrical power system, with two 45 kVA fully redundant engine-driven AC generators, two 300 A transformer-rectifiers, and URDC standby DC battery. Honeywell GTP 36-155(BH) 93 kW (125 shp) APU for engine starting and maintenance checking. DASA (TST) electric blade de-icing. Smiths Industries integrated electrical power management system (IEPMS) installed on AH-64D is currently being upgraded to incorporate multichannel remote interface unit (RIU) that will replace core electronics and wiring associated with conventional electrical control systems; improved IEPMS to become available in 2001 and will be installed on approximately 300 Apaches for US Army.

Comms: AN/ARC-164 UHF, AN/ARC-222 SINCGARS secure UHF/VHF; AN/ARC-220 UHF to be retrofitted; KY-28/58/TSEC crypto secure voice, C-8157 secure voice control; AN/APX-100 IFF unit with KIT-1A secure encoding; C-10414 Tempest intercom.
        Radar: Optional Lockheed Martin/Northrop Grumman AN/APG-78 Longbow mast-mounted 360 radar, presenting up to 256 targets on tactical situation display; detects air targets in air-to-ground mode; air-to-air mode for flying targets only.
        Flight: BAE North America AN/ASN-157 lightweight Doppler navigation system, Litton LR-80 (AN/ASN-143) strapdown AHRS, AN/ARN-89B ADF, GPS, Honeywell digital automatic stabilisation equipment (DASE), Astronautics Corporation HSI, Pacer Systems omnidirectional, low-airspeed air data system, remote magnetic indicator, BITE fault detection and location. Doppler system, with AHRS, permits nap-of-the-earth navigation and provides data for storing target locations. BAE Systems air data system, comprising two omnidirectional airspeed and direction sensors (AADSs) mounted on engine cowlings and a high integration air data computer (HIADC) installed in avionics bay.
        Instrumentation: Honeywell all-raster symbology generator processes TV data from IR and other sensors, superimposes symbology, and distributes the combination to CRT and helmet-mounted displays; Honeywell AN/APN-209 radar altimeter video display unit. `Manprint' (manpower integration) instrumentation including Litton Canada upfront display and two Honeywell 152 152 mm (6 6 in) monochrome CRT displays in each cockpit of early aircraft; with effect from 27th AH-64D, Honeywell flat-panel, colour, active matrix LCD multipurpose displays (MPDs) installed in both cockpits, as well as in aircraft for UK and Netherlands. AH-64A's 1,200 cockpit switches reduced to approximately 200 on AH-64D.
        Mission: Lockheed Martin target acquisition and designation sight and AN/AAQ-11 pilot's night vision sensor (TADS/PNVS) comprises two independently functioning, fully integrated systems mounted on nose.
        TADS consists of a rotating turret (120 in azimuth, 30/-60 in elevation) housing sensor subsystems, optical relay tube (being replaced under 1998 contract by Planar Advance/dpiX flat panel display) in the CPG's cockpit, three electronic units in the avionics bay, and cockpit-mounted controls and displays; used principally for target search, detection and laser designation, with CPG as primary operator (can also provide back-up night vision to pilot in event of PNVS failure). Once acquired by TADS, targets can be tracked manually or automatically for autonomous attack with gun, rockets or Hellfire missiles. TADS daylight sensor consists of TV camera with narrow (0 50') and wide angle (4 0') fields of view; direct view optics (4 narrow and 18 wide angle); laser spot tracker; and International Laser Systems laser range-finder/designator. Night sensor, in starboard half of turret, incorporates FLIR sight with narrow, medium and wide angle (3 6', 10 6' and 50) fields of view.
        PNVS consists of FLIR sensor (30 40 field of view) in rotating turret (90 in azimuth, +20/-45 in elevation) mounted above TADS; electronic unit in the avionics bay; and pilot's display and controls; provides pilot with thermal imaging for nap-of-the-earth flight to, from and within battle area at night or in adverse daytime weather, at altitudes low enough to avoid detection. PNVS imagery displayed on monocle in front of one of pilot's eyes; flight information including airspeed, altitude and heading is superimposed on this imagery to simplify piloting. Monocle is part of Honeywell integrated helmet and display sighting system (HADSS) worn by both crew members. Symetrics Industries improved data modem for transmission of target data (and eventually real-time imagery) between helicopters, tactical jet, Joint STARS airborne command posts, HQs and ground units at 16,000 bits/s, plus radio frequency interferometer beneath radome for identification of hostile transmitters.
        Self-defence: Aircraft survivability equipment (ASE) consists of Litton AN/APR-39 passive RWR, Sanders AN/ALQ-144 IR jammer, Raytheon AN/AVR-2 laser warning receiver, ITT AN/ALQ-136 radar jammer and chaff dispensers and Lockheed Martin AN/APR-48A radar frequency interferometer. Sanders AN/ALQ-212 Advanced Threat Infra-Red Countermeasures (ATIRCM) system and ITT AN/ALQ-211 suite of integrated RF countermeasures (SIRFC) system currently under development. ATIRCM combines next-generation directable IRCM system with Sanders AN/AAR-57 Common Missile Warning System (CMWS); SIRFC currently at EMD stage, with contractor tests on Apache Longbow undertaken in latter half of 1999, followed by operational test and evaluation from early 2000; production decision due to be taken in mid-2000. Elisra began flight test of passive airborne warning system in second half of 1999 and Israel plans to install this on its AH-64 fleet.

Avpro of UK cleared Exint transport pod for use with AH-64 at start of 2000, but certification to carry personnel still required. In special forces insertion role, Apache can carry maximum of four pods, each able to accommodate 226 kg (500 lb) payload. First customer reported close to placing order in January 2000, with initial batch of pods being manufactured by Hunting, which expected to complete first one in April 2000.

Boeing M230 Chain Gun 30 mm automatic cannon, located between the mainwheel legs in an underfuselage mounting with Smiths Industries electronic controls. Normal rate of fire is 625 rds/min of HE or HEDP (high-explosive dual-purpose) ammunition, which is interoperable with NATO Aden/DEFA 30 mm ammunition. Maximum ammunition load is 1,200 rounds. New `Sideloader' system demonstrated June 1994 and now installed in starboard forward avionics bay; cuts normal loading time of 30 minutes by up to half and reduces number of personnel required from three to one. Gun mounting is designed to collapse into fuselage between pilots in the event of a crash landing.
        New electric turret under development by Boeing, which received two year, US$5 million contract in first half of 1999; objective is to achieve accuracy of 0.5 mrads compared with current 3.0 mrads. Gun, mount and feed system to be retained in conjunction with redesigned mechanical system featuring electric rather than hydraulic drive as well as digital control; result should be at least 10 per cent lighter and require one instead of two electrical boxes. HR Textron responsible for controls, with Boeing providing the rest. Prototype delivery is scheduled for September 2001. Four underwing hardpoints, with Aircraft Hydro-Forming pylons and ejector units, on which can be carried up to 16 Hellfire/Hellfire 2 anti-tank missiles or up to seventy-six 2.75 in FFAR (folding fin aerial rockets) in their launchers or a combination of Hellfires and FFAR. Planned modification adds two extra hardpoints for four Stinger, four Mistral or two Sidewinder (including Sidearm anti-radiation variant) missiles; Shorts Starstreak high-velocity AAM system completed initial 17 month test programme on Apache in February 1997 and being promoted for use by US and UK, with funding allocated for follow-on two year test programme; second round of live fire tests completed October/November 1998. Starstreak to participate in competitive evaluation against Stinger, despite problems with debris from missile container and pressure wave caused by first-stage rocket motor; trials of both weapons were scheduled to begin September 1999; Hellfire remote electronics by Rockwell Collins; Honeywell aerial rocket control system; multiplex (MUX) system units by Honeywell. Co-pilot/gunner (CPG) has primary responsibility for firing gun and missiles, but pilot can override his controls to fire gun or launch missiles.

Dimensions, External
Main rotor diameter 14.63 m (48 ft 0 in)
Main rotor blade chord 0.53 m (1 ft 9 in)
Tail rotor diameter 2.79 m (9 ft 2 in)
Length overall: tail rotor turning 15.54 m (51 ft 0 in)
    both rotors turning 17.76 m (58 ft 3{1/8} in)
Wing span: clean 5.23 m (17 ft 2 in)
    over empty weapon racks 5.82 m (19 ft 1 in)
Height: over tailfin 3.55 m (11 ft 7 in)
    over tail rotor 4.30 m (14 ft 1 in)
    to top of rotor head 3.84 m (12 ft 7 in)
    overall (top of air data sensor) 4.66 m (15 ft 3 in)
    overall, Longbow radar 4.95 m (16 ft 3 in)
Main rotor ground clearance (turning) 3.59 m (11 ft 9 in)
Distance between c/l of pylons:
    inboard pair 3.20 m (10 ft 6 in)
    outboard pair 4.72 m (15 ft 6 in)
Tailplane span 3.40 m (11 ft 2 in)
Wheel track 2.03 m (6 ft 8 in)
Wheelbase 10.59 m (34 ft 9 in)

Main rotor disc 168.11 m2 (1,809.5 sq ft)
Tail rotor disc 6.13 m2 (66.0 sq ft)

Weights and Loadings
Weight empty:
    without Longbow approx 5,165 kg (11,387 lb)
    with Longbow 5,352 kg (11,800 lb)
Max fuel weight: internal 1,108 kg (2,442 lb)
    external (four Brunswick tanks) 2,712 kg (5,980 lb)
Primary mission gross weight 7,480 kg (16,491 lb)
Design mission gross weight 8,006 kg (17,650 lb)
Max T-O weight: -701 engines 9,525 kg (21,000 lb)
    -701C engines, ferry mission, full fuel 10,432 kg (23,000 lb)
Max disc loading 60.1 kg/m2 (12.31 lb/sq ft)

Performance (A: with -701 engines, without Longbow at 6,552 kg; 14,445 lb AUW, L: Apache Longbow at 7,530 kg; 16,601 lb with -701C engines)
Never-exceed speed (VNE) 197 kt (365 km/h; 227 mph)
Max level and max cruising speed:
    A 158 kt (293 km/h; 182 mph)
    L 143 kt (265 km/h; 165 mph)
Max rate of climb at S/L: L 736 m (2,415 ft)/min
Max vertical rate of climb at S/L:
    A 762 m (2,500 ft)/min
    L 450 m (1,475 ft)/min
Service ceiling: A 6,400 m (21,000 ft)
    L 5,915 m (19,400 ft)
Service ceiling, OEI: A 3,290 m (10,800 ft)
Hovering ceiling:
    IGE: A 4,570 m (15,000 ft)
        L 4,170 m (13,690 ft)
    OGE: A 3,505 m (11,500 ft)
        L 2,890 m (9,480 ft)
Max range, internal fuel: 30 min reserves:
        A 260 n miles (482 km; 300 miles)
        L 220 n miles (407 km; 253 miles)
    no reserves: L 257 n miles (476 km; 295 miles)
Ferry range, max internal and external fuel, still air, 45 min reserves 1,024 n miles (1,899 km; 1,180 miles)
Endurance at 1,220 m (4,000 ft) at 35C 1 h 50 min
Max endurance, L: internal fuel 2 h 44 min
    internal and external fuel 8 h 0 min
g limits at low altitude and airspeeds up to 164 kt (304 km/h; 189 mph) +3.5/-0.5

Weights For Typical Mission Performance
(all without Longbow; A: anti-armour at 1,220 m/4,000 ft and 35C, four Hellfire and 320 rounds of 30 mm ammunition; B: as A, but with 1,200 rounds; C: as A, but with six Hellfire and 540 rounds; D: anti-armour at 610 m/2,000 ft and 21C, 16 Hellfire and 1,200 rounds; E: air cover at 1,220 m/4,000 ft and 35C, four Hellfire and 1,200 rounds; F: as E but at 610 m/2,000 ft and 21C, four Hellfire, 19 rockets, 1,200 rounds; G: escort at 1,220 m/4,000 ft and 35C, 19 rockets and 1,200 rounds; H: escort at 610 m/2,000 ft and 21C, 38 rockets and 1,200 rounds):

Mission fuel: A 727 kg (1,602 lb)
    G 741 kg (1,633 lb)
    E 745 kg (1,643 lb)
    C 902 kg (1,989 lb)
    B 1,029 kg (2,269 lb)
    D 1,063 kg (2,344 lb)
    H 1,077 kg (2,374 lb)
    F 1,086 kg (2,394 lb)
Mission gross weight: A 6,552 kg (14,445 lb)
    E 6,874 kg (15,154 lb)
    G 6,932 kg (15,282 lb)
    B, C 7,158 kg (15,780 lb)
    D 7,728 kg (17,038 lb)
    F 7,813 kg (17,225 lb)
    H 7,867 kg (17,343 lb)

Typical Mission Performance (A-H as above)
Cruising speed at intermediate rated power:
    C 147 kt (272 km/h; 169 mph)
    D 148 kt (274 km/h; 170 mph)
    F 150 kt (278 km/h; 173 mph)
    B 151 kt (280 km/h; 174 mph)
    E, H 153 kt (283 km/h; 176 mph)
    A 154 kt (285 km/h; 177 mph)
    G 155 kt (287 km/h; 178 mph)
Max vertical rate of climb at intermediate rated power:
    B, C 137 m (450 ft)/min
    H 238 m (780 ft)/min
    F, G 262 m (860 ft)/min
    E 293 m (960 ft)/min
    D 301 m (990 ft)/min
    A 448 m (1,470 ft)/min
Mission endurance (no reserves): A, E, G 1 h 50 min
    C 1 h 47 min
    D, F, H 2 h 30 min
    B 2 h 40 min

Boeing AH-64D Apache attack helicopter

Pilot's cockpit on the AH-64D Apache Longbow

Experimental Rotorcraft Pilot's Associate cockpit, first flown in an AH-64D in October 1998 under a US$80 million programme by Boeing Phantom Works for US Army, intended to improve efficiency and situational awareness (US Army)

Co-pilot/gunner's cockpit on the AH-64D Apache Longbow

Boeing AH-64D Apache Longbow tandem-seat advanced attack helicopter (Mike Keep/Jane's)

AH-64A version of Boeing Apache in service with United Arab Emirates (Paul Jackson/Jane's)

Height (m): 3.55
Hovering Ceiling (m): 4570
Length (m): 15.54
Max Range (nm): 260
Max Rate Climb (m/min): 736
Max T-O Weight (kg): 9525
Service Ceiling (m): 6400
Wing Span (m): 14.63

See our products section for more information and pricing on All the World's Aircraft.
Search free content

Advanced Search
or find out more about our products and services

Search Sponsor

A i r  F o r c e s
S p o n s o r :

Related Products

Intelligence Review
Fighting Ships
All the World's Aircraft
Jane's International Defence Review

Defence Headlines

Eurosatory 2006: GD will offer Piranha IV as FRES baseline utility vehicle

Eurosatory 2006: Patria AMV wins battle for Slovenian contract

Eurosatory 2006: Carlyle Group linked with L-3 Communications

BAE Systems option compels EADS to buy Airbus stake

UK carrier force is readied for strike

Debate rages as military seeks to counter transport aircraft threat

Eurosatory: IAI reveals LORA

US says Chinas DF-31 will enter service in 2006

NBC capabilities: Egypt

Executive Overview: Janes Fighting Ships

Executive Overview: Janes Naval Weapon Systems

US completes first terminal descent ballistic missile intercept

© 2006 Jane's Information Group. All rights reserved   |   Terms of use   |   Jane's Privacy Policy