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Old 08-06-2008, 08:14 PM
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Default AH-1Z Viper

The Bell AH-1Z Viper is a twin-engine attack helicopter based on the AH-1W SuperCobra, that was developed for the United States Marine Corps. The AH-1Z features a four-blade, bearingless, composite main rotor system, uprated transmission, and a new target sighting system.

Aspects of the AH-1Z dates back to the Bell 249 in 1979, which was basically an AH-1S equipped with the four-blade rotor system from the Bell 412. This helicopter demonstrated Bell's Cobra II design at the Farnborough Airshow in 1980. The Cobra II was to be equipped with Hellfire missiles, a new targeting system and improved engines. Later came the Cobra 2000 proposal which included General Electric T700 engines and a four-blade rotor. This design drew interest from the US Marine Corps, but funding was not available. In 1993, Bell proposed an AH-1W-based version for the UK's new attack helicopter program. The derivative design, named CobraVenom, featured a modern digital ****pit and could carry TOWs, Hellfire or Brimstone missiles. The CobraVenom design was altered in 1995 by changing to a four-blade rotor system. The design lost to the AH-64D later that year however.

In 1996, the USMC launched the H-1 upgrade program by signing a contract with Bell Helicopter for upgrading 180 AH-1Ws into AH-1Zs (upgrading 100 UH-1Ns into UH-1Ys was also included). The H-1 program created completely modernized attack and utility helicopters with considerable design commonality to reduce operating costs. The AH-1Z and UH-1Y share a common tail boom, engines, rotor system, drive train, avionics architecture, software, controls and displays for over 84% identical components.

Bell participated in a joint Bell-Government integrated test team during the engineering manufacturing development (EMD) phase of the H-1 program. The AH-1Z program progressed slowly from 1996 to 2003 largely as a research and development operation.The existing two-bladed semi-rigid, teetering rotor system is being replaced with a four-bladed, hingeless, bearingless rotor system. The improvement in flight characteristics provided by the four-bladed configuration has led to increases in flight envelope, maximum speed, vertical rate-of-climb, payload and rotor vibration level.

The AH-1Z first flew on December 8, 2000. Three prototype aircraft were delivered to NAVAIR's Naval Air Station Patuxent River in July 2002 for the flight test phase of the program. Low-rate initial production followed beginning in October 2003, with deliveries to run through 2018. On October 15, 2005, the USMC, through the Naval Air Systems Command, accepted delivery of the first AH-1Z production helicopter to enter the fleet.

The AH-1Z completed sea-trial flight testing in May 2005. During the first quarter of 2006 the aircraft were transferred to the Operational Test Unit at the NAS Patuxent River, where they began operational evaluation (OPEVAL) testing. In February 2008, the AH-1Z and UH-1Y began the second and final portion of OPEVAL testing.

Bell delivered a UH-1Y to the U.S. Marine Corps on February 26, 2008, for February's third H-1 Upgrade delivery. The previous February deliveries were an AH-1Z on February 8, and an UH-1Y on February 13. A full-rate production decision is expected later this year.
The AH-1Z incorporates new rotor technology with upgraded military avionics, weapons systems, and electro-optical sensors in an integrated weapons platform. It has improved survivability and can find targets at longer ranges and attack them with precision weapons

The AH-1Z's new bearingless, hingeless rotor system has 75% fewer parts than that of four-bladed articulated systems. The blades are made of composites, which have an increased ballistic survivability, and there is a semiautomatic folding system for stowage aboard Amphibious assault ships.[4] Its two redesigned wing stubs are longer, with each adding a wing-tip station for a missile such as the AIM-9 Sidewinder. Each wing has two other stations for 70 mm (2.75 in) Hydra 70 rocket pods, or AGM-114 Hellfire quad missile launchers. The Longbow radar can also be mounted on a wing tip station

e Z-model's integrated avionics system (IAS) has been developed by Northrop Grumman. The system include two mission computers and an automatic flight control system. Each crew station has two 8x6-inch multifunction liquid crystal displays (LCD) and one 4.2x4.2-inch dual function LCD display. The communications suite combines a US Navy RT-1824 integrated radio, UHF/VHF, COMSEC and modem in a single unit. The navigation suite includes an embedded GPS inertial navigation system (EGI), a digital map system and a low-airspeed air data subsystem, which allows weapons delivery when hovering.

The crew are equipped with the Thales "Top Owl" helmet-mounted sight and display system. The Top Owl has a 24-hour day/night capability and a binocular display with a 40 field of view. Its visor projection provides forward looking infrared (FLIR) or video imagery. The AH-1Z has survivability equipment including the Hover Infared Suppression System (HIRSS) to cover engine exhausts, countermeasure dispensers, radar warning, missile warning and laser warning systems.

The Lockheed Martin target sight system (TSS) incorporates a third-generation FLIR sensor. The TSS provides target sighting in day, night or adverse weather conditions. The system has various view modes and can track with FLIR or by TV.


Operators
United States Marine Corps (180 on Order)

General characteristics

Crew: 2: pilot, CPG (co-pilot/gunner)
Capacity: 6,661 lb (3,021 kg)
Length: 58 ft 3 in (17.8 m)
Rotor diameter: 48 ft (14.6 m)
Height: 14 ft 4 in (4.37 m)
Disc area: 1,808 ft (168.0 m)
Empty weight: 12,300 lb (5,580 kg)
Useful load: 5,764 lb (2,620 kg)
Max takeoff weight: 18,500 lb (8,390 kg)
Powerplant: 2 General Electric T700-GE-401C turboshaft, 1,800 shp (1,340 kW) each
Rotor systems: 4 blades on main rotor, 4 blades on tail rotor

Performance

Never exceed speed: 222 knots (255 mph, 411 km/h)
Maximum speed: 160 kn (184 mph, 296 km/h)
Cruise speed: 134 kn (150 mph, 248 km/h)
Range: 370 nmi (426 mi, 685 km)
Combat radius: 110 nmi (127 mi, 204 km)
Service ceiling 20,000+ ft (6,100+ m)
Rate of climb: 2,790 ft/min (14.2 m/s)

Armament

M197 3-barreled 20 mm "Gatling-style" cannon in the A/A49E-7 turret
2.75 in (70 mm) Hydra 70 rockets -
AGM-114 Hellfire Missiles - Up to 8 missiles mounted ,
AIM-9 Sidewinder Anti-Aircraft Missiles - (total of 2)
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  #2  
Old 08-07-2008, 06:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrj1000 View Post
The Bell AH-1Z Viper is a twin-engine attack helicopter based on the AH-1W SuperCobra, that was developed for the United States Marine Corps. The AH-1Z features a four-blade, bearingless, composite main rotor system, uprated transmission, and a new target sighting system.

Aspects of the AH-1Z dates back to the Bell 249 in 1979, which was basically an AH-1S equipped with the four-blade rotor system from the Bell 412. This helicopter demonstrated Bell's Cobra II design at the Farnborough Airshow in 1980. The Cobra II was to be equipped with Hellfire missiles, a new targeting system and improved engines. Later came the Cobra 2000 proposal which included General Electric T700 engines and a four-blade rotor. This design drew interest from the US Marine Corps, but funding was not available. In 1993, Bell proposed an AH-1W-based version for the UK's new attack helicopter program. The derivative design, named CobraVenom, featured a modern digital ****pit and could carry TOWs, Hellfire or Brimstone missiles. The CobraVenom design was altered in 1995 by changing to a four-blade rotor system. The design lost to the AH-64D later that year however.

In 1996, the USMC launched the H-1 upgrade program by signing a contract with Bell Helicopter for upgrading 180 AH-1Ws into AH-1Zs (upgrading 100 UH-1Ns into UH-1Ys was also included). The H-1 program created completely modernized attack and utility helicopters with considerable design commonality to reduce operating costs. The AH-1Z and UH-1Y share a common tail boom, engines, rotor system, drive train, avionics architecture, software, controls and displays for over 84% identical components.

Bell participated in a joint Bell-Government integrated test team during the engineering manufacturing development (EMD) phase of the H-1 program. The AH-1Z program progressed slowly from 1996 to 2003 largely as a research and development operation.The existing two-bladed semi-rigid, teetering rotor system is being replaced with a four-bladed, hingeless, bearingless rotor system. The improvement in flight characteristics provided by the four-bladed configuration has led to increases in flight envelope, maximum speed, vertical rate-of-climb, payload and rotor vibration level.

The AH-1Z first flew on December 8, 2000. Three prototype aircraft were delivered to NAVAIR's Naval Air Station Patuxent River in July 2002 for the flight test phase of the program. Low-rate initial production followed beginning in October 2003, with deliveries to run through 2018. On October 15, 2005, the USMC, through the Naval Air Systems Command, accepted delivery of the first AH-1Z production helicopter to enter the fleet.

The AH-1Z completed sea-trial flight testing in May 2005. During the first quarter of 2006 the aircraft were transferred to the Operational Test Unit at the NAS Patuxent River, where they began operational evaluation (OPEVAL) testing. In February 2008, the AH-1Z and UH-1Y began the second and final portion of OPEVAL testing.

Bell delivered a UH-1Y to the U.S. Marine Corps on February 26, 2008, for February's third H-1 Upgrade delivery. The previous February deliveries were an AH-1Z on February 8, and an UH-1Y on February 13. A full-rate production decision is expected later this year.
The AH-1Z incorporates new rotor technology with upgraded military avionics, weapons systems, and electro-optical sensors in an integrated weapons platform. It has improved survivability and can find targets at longer ranges and attack them with precision weapons

The AH-1Z's new bearingless, hingeless rotor system has 75% fewer parts than that of four-bladed articulated systems. The blades are made of composites, which have an increased ballistic survivability, and there is a semiautomatic folding system for stowage aboard Amphibious assault ships.[4] Its two redesigned wing stubs are longer, with each adding a wing-tip station for a missile such as the AIM-9 Sidewinder. Each wing has two other stations for 70 mm (2.75 in) Hydra 70 rocket pods, or AGM-114 Hellfire quad missile launchers. The Longbow radar can also be mounted on a wing tip station

e Z-model's integrated avionics system (IAS) has been developed by Northrop Grumman. The system include two mission computers and an automatic flight control system. Each crew station has two 8x6-inch multifunction liquid crystal displays (LCD) and one 4.2x4.2-inch dual function LCD display. The communications suite combines a US Navy RT-1824 integrated radio, UHF/VHF, COMSEC and modem in a single unit. The navigation suite includes an embedded GPS inertial navigation system (EGI), a digital map system and a low-airspeed air data subsystem, which allows weapons delivery when hovering.

The crew are equipped with the Thales "Top Owl" helmet-mounted sight and display system. The Top Owl has a 24-hour day/night capability and a binocular display with a 40 field of view. Its visor projection provides forward looking infrared (FLIR) or video imagery. The AH-1Z has survivability equipment including the Hover Infared Suppression System (HIRSS) to cover engine exhausts, countermeasure dispensers, radar warning, missile warning and laser warning systems.

The Lockheed Martin target sight system (TSS) incorporates a third-generation FLIR sensor. The TSS provides target sighting in day, night or adverse weather conditions. The system has various view modes and can track with FLIR or by TV.


Operators
United States Marine Corps (180 on Order)

General characteristics

Crew: 2: pilot, CPG (co-pilot/gunner)
Capacity: 6,661 lb (3,021 kg)
Length: 58 ft 3 in (17.8 m)
Rotor diameter: 48 ft (14.6 m)
Height: 14 ft 4 in (4.37 m)
Disc area: 1,808 ft (168.0 m)
Empty weight: 12,300 lb (5,580 kg)
Useful load: 5,764 lb (2,620 kg)
Max takeoff weight: 18,500 lb (8,390 kg)
Powerplant: 2 General Electric T700-GE-401C turboshaft, 1,800 shp (1,340 kW) each
Rotor systems: 4 blades on main rotor, 4 blades on tail rotor

Performance

Never exceed speed: 222 knots (255 mph, 411 km/h)
Maximum speed: 160 kn (184 mph, 296 km/h)
Cruise speed: 134 kn (150 mph, 248 km/h)
Range: 370 nmi (426 mi, 685 km)
Combat radius: 110 nmi (127 mi, 204 km)
Service ceiling 20,000+ ft (6,100+ m)
Rate of climb: 2,790 ft/min (14.2 m/s)

Armament

M197 3-barreled 20 mm "Gatling-style" cannon in the A/A49E-7 turret
2.75 in (70 mm) Hydra 70 rockets -
AGM-114 Hellfire Missiles - Up to 8 missiles mounted ,
AIM-9 Sidewinder Anti-Aircraft Missiles - (total of 2)
I got goose bumps just reading about it. I wouldn't mind flying a jet but attack choppers get up close and personal.
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  #3  
Old 08-07-2008, 04:17 PM
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I had posted before about the Z. It will be the most complex attack helicopter in the world once it begins fielding. It is a deadly piece of weaponry that will help the Marines greatly.
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  #4  
Old 08-07-2008, 05:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperAlpha1 View Post
I had posted before about the Z. It will be the most complex attack helicopter in the world once it begins fielding. It is a deadly piece of weaponry that will help the Marines greatly.
Sorry Snipes...i must have missed your thread..or it slipped my mind mate......your right though...have you read about the sensors on this beast....
better rotar system aswell.....the USMC are going to have one hell of a friend when it enters service
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Old 08-07-2008, 07:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrj1000 View Post
Sorry Snipes...i must have missed your thread..or it slipped my mind mate......your right though...have you read about the sensors on this beast....
better rotar system aswell.....the USMC are going to have one hell of a friend when it enters service
No problem, just wanted to re-iterate the lethality that can reach in front of the element.
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  #6  
Old 08-08-2008, 03:17 PM
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jrj1000 jrj1000 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperAlpha1 View Post
No problem, just wanted to re-iterate the lethality that can reach in front of the element.

The ****pit is ment to look like something from NASA mate...all the LCD screens..GPS systems targeting and maping screens..its like something out of star wars....the front targeting pod and all weather systems will make it top notch Attack Heli
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  #7  
Old 08-09-2008, 02:22 PM
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lots and lots of stuff about the attack helis on this forum lately.
its a funny thing that we don't have any. they could surely come in handy some places.
but well. we just spend more money on gear to shoot them down i suppose.
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