Within its aviation review, the US Army announced the RAH-66 Comanche attack
helicopter program cut off with funding to be reallocated for other US Army
programs that will successfully meet current operational requirements.
Boeing and Sikorsky, a United Technologies subsidiary, as the prime contractors
for the RAH-66 Comanche will cease activity on the program. A budget amendment
will be submitted to Congress for the fiscal year 2005 budget request that would
allow Comanche termination.
cancellation will allow US Army to invest approximately $14.6 billion currently
allocated for 121 Comanche helicopters (FY2004-2011) in modernization of 1,400
aircraft (70% of current rotary-winged fleet), purchase 800 new aircraft, and
accelerate the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) program. The US Army intends to
extend service life of its aircraft fleet beyond 2020. The new aircraft to be
procured could be latest models of AH-64, UH-60, and CH-47 helicopters.
The Aviation Review leveraged lessons learned from the Global War on Terrorism
and the occupation of Iraq. US Army formations would be transformed into more
lethal, agile, modular, strategically flexible and cohesive units.
Part of $14.6 billion freed by Comanche cancellation will fund the Aircraft
Survivability Equipment (ASE) initiatives making US Army aircraft more
survivable in wartime and stability operations.
The Department of Defense and the US Army have expressed their commitment to
Future Combat System (FCS) and Army Transformation initiatives. Following
Comanche cancellation, the US Air Force has renewed its commitment to the F/A-22
one of the Department of Defense most criticized programs.
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