Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Origin: United States of America
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Description: The AH-64 Apache is a twin-turbine engine, armored, attack helicopter designed to defeat the most advanced main battle tanks at standoff ranges. It employs a combination of advanced sensors and Hellfire anti-tank missiles (up to 16), as well as a 30mm nose-mounted M230 chain gun (1,200 rounds) and 70mm unguided rockets (up to 76). The Apache is capable of operation at night, in darkness, and in adverse weather, even in presence of obscurants. The M230 chain gun fires M788 30mm target practice rounds and M848 30mm dummy ammunition during training. They were deployed for the first time in Panama during operation Just Cause in 1989 and subsequently in other military campaigns with less impact than during the Gulf War. In 1991 the AH-64As played a vital role destroying Iraqi armored battle tanks stationary and moving. In 2003 during operation Iraqi Freedom they provided close air support to American armored units while they were deploying throughout Iraq. There are three generations or blocks of the Apache attack helicopter: AH-64A Block I in the mid-1980s, AH-64D Block II in the late 1990s and AH-64E Block III in the early 2010s.
The AH-64D Apache (Block II) is an improved derivative of the combat-proven AH-64A Apache attack helicopter. It features 400% more lethality over current AH-64As, 720 percent more survivable, can hit moving and stationary targets in presence of obscurants when optical systems are rendered ineffective, and only needs 3.4 hours-man of maintenance per flight hour. It can accommodate up to four Stinger air-to-air missiles for self-defense purposes. The Apache Block II is compatible with the digitized battlefield of the 21st century. The AH-64D Apache attack helicopter entered service in 1998. In late 1990s, the Netherlands purchased 30 new-built AH-64Ds. In 2000, Egypt launched a $400 million modernization program to upgrade existing -64A models to -64D standard. In August 2001, The Japan Defense Agency (JDA) selected the AH-64D Apache attack helicopter for the land arm of Japanese Defense Force (JDF). The deal includes between 60 and 80 AH-64Ds powered by General Electric T700-GE-701C engines and up to 23 Longbow fire control radars. The aircraft and related equipment will be procured for 10-year period with final assembly to be carried out in Japan under a licensed production program.
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