Tiger ARH (Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter), being developed by Eurocopter,
successfully performed its maiden flight over Eurocopter's facilities at
During the 50 minutes flight, the flight test pilot and the test engineer
checked out that all the aircraft systems and the flight envelope were operating
and performing properly as predicted.
Now the first two Tiger ARH will start qualification tests to demonstrate
readiness for service in order to be delivered to the Australian Army's Aviation
Corps late this year.
The Tiger ARH ordered by Australia will be outfitted with a 30mm nose-mounted
cannon, 70mm rockets and Hellfire II anti-tank missiles. A new communications
and tactical data link system specifically designed for Australian forces will
be integrated into this aircraft.
The Tiger ARH helicopter was selected by Australia in August 2001. The Bell's
AH-1 Cobra, Boeing's AH-64 Apache and Agusta's Mangusta were the other
contenders for the Air 87 project.
Australia ordered 22 Tiger ARHs with 18 of them to be assembled locally in
Australia by Australian Aerospace, an Eurocopter subsidiary. The contract worth $1.3
billion includes logistics support for these aircraft from 2005 to 2020,
training means, and related equipment.
The Tiger ARH will achieve initial operational capability in 2007 with
deliveries to begin in late 2004 and ending in April 2008.
To date, Australia (22 Tiger ARHs), Spain (24 Tiger HADs), Germany (80 Tiger
UHTs), and France (80 Tiger HAP/HADs) have ordered the Tiger attack helicopter.
France and Germany have plans to buy around 200 Tigers each, so the total number
of Tiger to be procured worldwide would exceed 400 units.
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