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    Best Attack Helicopter?

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    Which one's the best helicopter?

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    Total Votes: 15
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    milky_candy_sugar

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    Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  milky_candy_sugar on Thu Sep 02, 2010 11:15 am

    Explain your choice and debate ^^


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    zraver

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  zraver on Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:29 pm

    The AH-64D with its ability to use mast mounted milimeter wave radar and buddy lazing to fire from behind cover or designated targets for others who are behind cover remains the biggest heliborne threat to armor. The Hellfire missile is still a one shot one kill anti-armor system with a range of 8000m and an arced flight it allows the Apache to remain outside of the range of a tanks or Manpads return fire and under the engagement envelope of larger tactical SAMs.
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    Vladimir79

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  Vladimir79 on Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:47 pm

    I guess the Apache until Mi-28N gets Hermes.

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  zraver on Fri Jan 21, 2011 5:39 pm

    If the public domain info is right the Hermes is huge, the Mi-28 won't carry many of them. It seems like the Hermes is more of a deep strike weapon- sling them on to some Sukhoi's and have fun.
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    Vladimir79

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  Vladimir79 on Fri Jan 21, 2011 9:16 pm

    zraver wrote:If the public domain info is right the Hermes is huge, the Mi-28 won't carry many of them. It seems like the Hermes is more of a deep strike weapon- sling them on to some Sukhoi's and have fun.

    Diameter is only 21cm. At 130kg it can carry 16.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Sat Jan 22, 2011 12:59 am

    Hermes is similar size and just over double the weight of Vikhr though it is a two stage missile with much longer range there shouldn't be any problems with either the Kamov or the Mil carrying lots of Hermes missiles.

    When it is fully functional with radar et al the Mi-28N will have longer radar range and it will also have the advantage of an air search radar as well with both CM and MM wave radars.

    It seems to have better armour protection than the Apache though neither aircraft is a real tank.

    I think the extra reach of missiles and extended vision range of the radar should make the Havoc able to engage targets from longer stand off ranges which is important considering the improvement in the threat is significant now and will only get better in the near future.

    Automatic terrain avoidance flight modes also improve survivability and the small cabin for extra crew for short hops would be useful to rescue downed crews.

    The main reason I prefer the Mil to the Apache is that the Apache is a bit of a Hangar Queen and requires a lot of maintainence and support to keep operational.

    Its advantage of course is that with a missile with a range of about 20km it can engage targets well outside the range of Chapparal or Stinger and below Patriot.

    The Apache on the other hand is right in that kill zone for the SA-19 on Tunguska with its 10km range missiles in the current model with Pantsir-S1 extending that range to 20km things are only going to get worse.

    As was shown by Desert Storm the concept of Apaches and A-10s killing thousands of tanks is bunk. Most tanks were taken out with LGBs.

    The ideal environment with flat open terrain and they weren't the tool of choice you might claim that more rugged territory with lots of hiding spots might suit them better... of course such terrain suits the defences better too.

    Of course the Ka-52 is nice as well with its ability to carry a box of UAVs to scout ahead for targets...
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    IronsightSniper

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  IronsightSniper on Sat Jan 22, 2011 2:15 am

    Ka-52s are nice, however they are very unarmored and thus vulnerable to AAA fire.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Sat Jan 22, 2011 3:44 am

    I would expect the only unarmoured part of the Ka-52 was the enormous canopies.

    The original Ka-50 was very well armoured.

    I have read about tethered tests where a Ka-50 was hovered about 200m from a ZSU-23-4 which fired a 200 round burst at the helo.

    It blew the tail section right off, but as it does not need the tail section to fly it was possible to fly the aircraft the 2km or so back to its base and land it by remote control.

    I doubt any other aircraft could fly back in such a situation.

    I do like the Apache but I think its enormous windows are a bad idea... it has been reported that in combat rounds have gone through the canopies relatively easily.

    The Mi-28N has been criticised for its small windows, but when you are sitting very close to them they don't need to be that big.

    Being able to see out the windows is important for landing and manoeuvring but for combat it is the long range sensors you want to detect and ID targets at long range so the smaller heavily armoured windows are good enough. (They are very thick and armoured to withstand 20mm HE rounds so the view out them will not be crystal clear...)
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    GarryB

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Sat Jan 22, 2011 3:59 am

    Actually I just looked up the Hermes's specs and it is the ground launched Hermes that has a 210mm tube (and a range of 100km).

    The Hermes-A which is the air launched model has a 170mm calibre tube and has a 170mm calibre booster rocket, the missile itself is 130mm calibre and the missile and launch tube weigh 110kgs.

    In the specifications for the missile it mentions that it can be carried in groups of up to 16 and it shows a picture of an Su-25TM with one pylon visible with 8 missiles on it with the opposite pylon carrying 8 more one presumes. It also shows a Ka-52 with 4 missiles on 4 pylons for a total of 16 missiles.

    AFAIK the Mi-28N has a higher payload capacity to the Ka-52 so carrying 16 on two pylons might be possible, but that is just speculation on my part.
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    IronsightSniper

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  IronsightSniper on Sat Jan 22, 2011 5:51 am

    Yes, the Ka-50 was armored, but I have read that the Ka-52 only has a couple mm of titanium on the pilots' backseats. The rest of the armor was stripped to meat the weight requirements.

    "The twin seat Ka-52 was developed in the early 1990s on the basis of the single-seat Kamov Ka-50 Black Shark assault helicopter after it became clear that Russian Air Force want to have a new assault helicopter with two pilots, so Ka-50 is losing to Mil Mi-28N. The first Ka-52 prototype made its maiden flight in 1997.In 2003 the military selected Mi-28N as a main attack helicopter obviously because of its better armor protection. Although Ka-50 has armor equal to the Mil machine, Kamov designers had to sacrifice it developing Ka-52 in order keep the take-off weight at 10,000 kg mark. The Kamov designers admit that Ka-52’s pilots have protective armor only from the back of their seats."

    The article, I found translated via Google on another forum. I found it funny that the poster of that was nightcrawler.

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    GarryB

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Sat Jan 22, 2011 6:24 am

    The choice of side by side seating was partially to reduce actual armour weight.

    By putting the pilots side by side you greatly improve communication and cooperation but what you also do is remove two whole sides worth of armour from the cockpit.
    Obviously the drawback is that a penetrating hit could incapacitate both crewmen.

    Of course many aircraft don't even have the levels of protection of the Ka-52.

    I have re-read the thread topic and actually it really doesn't specify what the "Best" is.

    I would rate the Apache as the best American helo, but then if you want the best value for money then I would start seriously considering the Cobra as the best.

    The two European aircraft... Tiger and Mongoose are lighter helos in the Cobra weight range and would be useful to in some scenarios.

    The attack variant of the ANSAT looks interesting and seems to have a rear cabin with a bubble window.

    The coolest gunship would have to be the proposed Hind version that was going to be fitted with a tail gunner... from experience it was found that the enemy often waited for the aircraft to pass and then opened fire on its rear so there were plans to fit a tail gun in the Hind with a gatling gun of 50 cal to suppress any fire after it had passed. The Il-102 which was the competition for the Su-25 actually had a tail gunner for the purpose of suppressing enemy gunfire but it ended up being huge... the size of a B-25!
    Of course its internal low drag carriage of bombs and its 7 ton payload and potential for carrying a powerful gun (45mm was the standard gun and a 57mm gun was proposed) in many ways it was directly comparable to the A-10.
    Of course the Soviets realised that a gun was no substitute for a bomb or a rocket and a smaller cheaper lighter gun was fitted.

    Reports from the Georgian conflict suggest the pilots want a lower rate of fire option as it was difficult to fire a couple of rounds at a target because of the high rate of fire.
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    IronsightSniper

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  IronsightSniper on Sat Jan 22, 2011 7:03 am

    I actually find the South African variant of the Hind to be the best Hind in general.

    I'm not afraid to admit that the Apache is indeed a pretty mediocre helicopter, the only helicopter that I see as any change from the old is the Ka-50, which is what I happened to vote for.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Sat Jan 22, 2011 9:43 am

    I don't think the Apache is mediocre... when used properly it is up there with the best in most areas despite its age. It is very high maintainence and expensive though.

    With the Cobra you get almost as good a performer but much cheaper and easier to maintain.

    And you can't possibly be serious about that South African Hind....

    It looks awful!

    In comparison the Mi-35 with the twin barrel 23mm cannon (a much better weapon than the under powered Giat 20mm fitted... nay thrown at the South African ...grade... I wont call it an up grade because there is nothing up about it) and the small span wings of the Mi-28 which greatly reduce drag and improve lift in the hover (the older larger wings generated lift in forward flight but reduced lift in the hover), and allow the Hind to carry more guided missiles than it has ever carried before.

    Of course you are completely entitled to your opinions.

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  zraver on Wed Jan 26, 2011 2:46 am

    GarryB wrote:Hermes is similar size and just over double the weight of Vikhr though it is a two stage missile with much longer range there shouldn't be any problems with either the Kamov or the Mil carrying lots of Hermes missiles.

    When it is fully functional with radar et al the Mi-28N will have longer radar range and it will also have the advantage of an air search radar as well with both CM and MM wave radars.

    Air search radar is a bit of a useless add on. Unless the US and Russia face off or one of us faces China in a ground war both our countries will likely have total air dominance. Awacs backed by 4++/5 gen fighters will do much better than any helo.

    I think the extra reach of missiles and extended vision range of the radar should make the Havoc able to engage targets from longer stand off ranges which is important considering the improvement in the threat is significant now and will only get better in the near future.

    I dissagree, the helicopters role is not deep interdiction of a corps sized units rear area.

    Automatic terrain avoidance flight modes also improve survivability and the small cabin for extra crew for short hops would be useful to rescue downed crews.

    The AH-64 actually has external mounts for down crews/SF operators to attach to.

    The main reason I prefer the Mil to the Apache is that the Apache is a bit of a Hangar Queen and requires a lot of maintainence and support to keep operational.

    All high-tech systems do regardless of who makes them.

    Its advantage of course is that with a missile with a range of about 20km it can engage targets well outside the range of Chapparal or Stinger and below Patriot.

    Its doubtful it can see that far and stay close to the earth and below enemy radars.

    The Apache on the other hand is right in that kill zone for the SA-19 on Tunguska with its 10km range missiles in the current model with Pantsir-S1 extending that range to 20km things are only going to get worse.

    Those systems still have blind spots close to the ground from ground clutter. They are designed to hit jets not helos sitting just above the ground.

    As was shown by Desert Storm the concept of Apaches and A-10s killing thousands of tanks is bunk. Most tanks were taken out with LGBs.

    Source? The Hellfire can kill any tank in the world and the maverick is overkill.

    The ideal environment with flat open terrain and they weren't the tool of choice you might claim that more rugged territory with lots of hiding spots might suit them better... of course such terrain suits the defences better too.

    The AH-64 dominated the Iraqis.

    Of course the Ka-52 is nice as well with its ability to carry a box of UAVs to scout ahead for targets...


    The problem is the more it carries of Y, the less it can carry of X. The US uses an integrated approach that lets tank busters bust tanks, recon platforms scout and so on. The more missions you give a platform, the less well it can do any one of them. The Foxbat is a perfect example of this. If it tried to get into a turning fight its dead, it has to use its speed. If you give Helicopter A 12 ATGMs, 2 AAMs and a box of drones, and Helicopter B has 16 ATGM's and 4 and 5th gen fighter support with JSTARS and AWACS which one will kill more tanks? The max A can kill is 12 vs B's 16.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Wed Jan 26, 2011 4:02 am

    Air search radar is a bit of a useless add on. Unless the US and Russia face off or one of us faces China in a ground war both our countries will likely have total air dominance. Awacs backed by 4++/5 gen fighters will do much better than any helo.

    It can detect a stinger at 6km range. It really doesn't hurt to have your own air search radar even if you are part of a network. You can contribute information to the net.
    Plus low flying enemy aircraft can be detected early allowing the crew more options defending themselves.

    I dissagree, the helicopters role is not deep interdiction of a corps sized units rear area.

    You are entitled to your opinion but your claims of standoff range for the Apache doesn't hold water with the old model TOR and with the new model TOR the Apache is deeper inside the missile envelope. The detection and destruction of targets at extended range is a good thing for the launching helo but a mix of weapons could easily be accommodated. The 8 missile pylon of the ATAKA missile could be adapted to carry four ATAKAs in the lower row and two Hermes missiles in the top row meaning 8 x Atakas and 4 Hermes missiles plus the inner pylons for rocket pods or gun pods. This would mean that all the hermes missiles or all the ATAKAs could be fired without asymmetric load problems. With a 30kg warhead the HERMES could be used against a wide range of battlefield targets.

    The AH-64 actually has external mounts for down crews/SF operators to attach to.

    I know, but they are fitted back at base rather than carried all the time in case they are needed. The cabin space on the Havoc is there if it is needed so you can go straight in and pick up people rather than having to fly back to base and have a pylon removed and the evac system attached.

    All high-tech systems do regardless of who makes them.

    Really? Are you saying the Cobra is not high tech? The Apache is a well known hangar queen, or maintainence whore. Later model Cobras are carrying lots of high tech stuff yet they are not thought of in the same way.

    Its doubtful it can see that far and stay close to the earth and below enemy radars.

    Not all terrain is mountains. Visibility will not just depend on visibility... as you mention other assets can pass target information to the helo. In fact the Ka-52 can carry UAVs in a large box under a weapon pylon that can be launched and controlled from the helo to search for targets over hills or around corners so to speak.

    In fact one helo can pop up over a hill and do a scan and then drop down and process the target information and pass that on to another helo hundreds or thousands of metres away that could pop up and fire a missile at a target he had not directly seen before.

    Those systems still have blind spots close to the ground from ground clutter. They are designed to hit jets not helos sitting just above the ground.

    Hahahahahaha... you are a funny guy.

    Ground clutter?

    The primary purpose of the Tunguska is to kill Apaches and A-10s... if its primary purpose was to kill jets then it would have radar guidance instead of radar directed optical guidance using a digital auto tracker.

    Source? The Hellfire can kill any tank in the world and the maverick is overkill.

    Hellfire and Maverick both failed to destroy abandoned Abrams tanks.
    But I wasn't saying they couldn't, I am saying they didn't. It was cheaper and easier to use LGBs.

    The AH-64 dominated the Iraqis.

    Flat open terrain against an unmotivated enemy.

    The problem is the more it carries of Y, the less it can carry of X.

    The Ka-52 is a recon helo to replace the Mi-2. Its job is recon so giving up 6 ATGMs to carry 8 UAVs is a fair trade.

    If you give Helicopter A 12 ATGMs, 2 AAMs and a box of drones, and Helicopter B has 16 ATGM's and 4 and 5th gen fighter support with JSTARS and AWACS which one will kill more tanks? The max A can kill is 12 vs B's 16.

    And there you are back into the Cold War.

    The odds of a helicopter taking on thousands of enemy tanks is very very low. Helicopters are slow and vulnerable and using them in large numbers makes them juicy targets.

    If the enemy is stupid enough to mass a large formation of tanks then fixed wing aircraft with LGBs and cluster bombs makes far more sense.

    Modern helos are CAS platforms... even more so in coin situations, so carrying 16 ATGMs is an enormous waste because ATGMs are expensive. A few unguided rockets and gun pods make a lot more sense most of the time and the information you could get from a helo launched UAV would likely allow the helo to operate much further back from the enemy position and make it much less vulnerable to return fire while still able to perform its role of heavy direct fire very mobile artillery.

    The Ka-52 is more likely to hang back and launch a UAV to fly around the target area to spot things that need hitting hard so when the Su-25 comes in the Ka-52 can pass accurate targetting data to him and then monitor the results of the attack and decide if a follow up attack is necessary and warning of any threats on the ground as they reveal themselves.



    Another advantage is that rather than putting the night vision view of the outside of the aircraft in a small monocle in one eye like they do with the Apache, the Mi-28N will have both eyes getting an external night time view from these.

    (Apache Pilots describe using the night sight of the Apache as comparable to flying while looking through a straw.

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  zraver on Wed Jan 26, 2011 5:24 pm

    GarryB wrote:It can detect a stinger at 6km range. It really doesn't hurt to have your own air search radar even if you are part of a network. You can contribute information to the net.
    Plus low flying enemy aircraft can be detected early allowing the crew more options defending themselves.

    Even the stinger is in-effective in front aspect shots vs low flying helos. The IR supression systems of modern combat helos are very effective. side and tail shots are the preferred mode of engagement and the air search radar can't see those angles.

    You are entitled to your opinion but your claims of standoff range for the Apache doesn't hold water with the old model TOR and with the new model TOR the Apache is deeper inside the missile envelope.

    Missiles don't have wheels. The Apache is designed to be able to fire almost from the weeds. The Hellfire follows an arc to allow this. No SAM is effective below about 10m.

    I know, but they are fitted back at base rather than carried all the time in case they are needed. The cabin space on the Havoc is there if it is needed so you can go straight in and pick up people rather than having to fly back to base and have a pylon removed and the evac system attached.

    That space adds weight and size for very limited usefulness.

    Really? Are you saying the Cobra is not high tech? The Apache is a well known hangar queen, or maintainence whore. Later model Cobras are carrying lots of high tech stuff yet they are not thought of in the same way.

    In ODS the AH-64A had a readiness rate of 85%, the modern AH-64D maintains a 91%. What was a hangar queen is now a mature technology.

    Not all terrain is mountains. Visibility will not just depend on visibility... as you mention other assets can pass target information to the helo. In fact the Ka-52 can carry UAVs in a large box under a weapon pylon that can be launched and controlled from the helo to search for targets over hills or around corners so to speak.

    At the cost of weapons carried.

    In fact one helo can pop up over a hill and do a scan and then drop down and process the target information and pass that on to another helo hundreds or thousands of metres away that could pop up and fire a missile at a target he had not directly seen before.

    The AH-64D and Kiowa Warrior can both put just the mast mounted mm radar (and FLIR/laser for the Kiowa)above terrain and direct fire from other units. The Apache can also use buddy lasing from forward units like infantry.

    Hahahahahaha... you are a funny guy.

    Ground clutter?

    The primary purpose of the Tunguska is to kill Apaches and A-10s... if its primary purpose was to kill jets then it would have radar guidance instead of radar directed optical guidance using a digital auto tracker.

    You might want to check the engagement envelope of that system. The Tunguska and Tor both have 10m floors.

    Hellfire and Maverick both failed to destroy abandoned Abrams tanks.
    But I wasn't saying they couldn't, I am saying they didn't. It was cheaper and easier to use LGBs.

    One tank M1A1 was abandoned (ODS), it was destroyed by hellfires after gunfire failed. In OIF an M1A1HA Abrams was abandoned in Baghdad after an engine fire and destroyed by Maverick missiles. IIRC Vlad has a picture of the front turret penetration.

    Flat open terrain against an unmotivated enemy.

    You do a disservice to the Republican Guard, unmotivated they were not. They fought hard.

    The Ka-52 is a recon helo to replace the Mi-2. Its job is recon so giving up 6 ATGMs to carry 8 UAVs is a fair trade.

    The Ka-52 is an attack hello.

    And there you are back into the Cold War.

    The odds of a helicopter taking on thousands of enemy tanks is very very low. Helicopters are slow and vulnerable and using them in large numbers makes them juicy targets.

    Yet everyone is developing new ATGM's.

    If the enemy is stupid enough to mass a large formation of tanks then fixed wing aircraft with LGBs and cluster bombs makes far more sense.

    Ya how well did the Iraqi air force do at that vs the masses of US tanks? If you don't have command of the air the helo can still fly.

    Modern helos are CAS platforms... even more so in coin situations, so carrying 16 ATGMs is an enormous waste because ATGMs are expensive. A few unguided rockets and gun pods make a lot more sense most of the time and the information you could get from a helo launched UAV would likely allow the helo to operate much further back from the enemy position and make it much less vulnerable to return fire while still able to perform its role of heavy direct fire very mobile artillery.

    As it turns out the ATGM is a great weapon for picking off targets in a COIN environment. It can hot a particular room in a building, or car on the street and reduce damage to the area around the target.


    Another advantage is that rather than putting the night vision view of the outside of the aircraft in a small monocle in one eye like they do with the Apache, the Mi-28N will have both eyes getting an external night time view from these.

    The Apache system works and leaves one eye free to monitor other things. It also preserves depth perception and the human eyes ability to track on movement sand see color. FLIR uses false color and if the pilot only has the FLIR view then colored lights cannot be seen (red, yellow etc).
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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:15 am

    Even the stinger is in-effective in front aspect shots vs low flying helos.

    Most helicopters are vulnerable to MANPADS because their engine exhausts are mounted on the sides of the aircraft which in most cases makes them perfectly visible from the front, the side and the rear.

    The IR supression systems of modern combat helos are very effective. side and tail shots are the preferred mode of engagement and the air search radar can't see those angles.

    Some IR suppressors actually attract some types of missiles, and side and rear engagements are preferred because the crew are less likely to see the missile launched.

    The air search radar of the Mi-28N is mounted in a large ball structure above the main rotor and has 360 degree coverage.

    Missiles don't have wheels. The Apache is designed to be able to fire almost from the weeds. The Hellfire follows an arc to allow this. No SAM is effective below about 10m.

    Radar guided SAMs have problems tracking low targets because of ground clutter. Pantsir and TOR use optical target tracking and use their tracking radars to transmit course corrections to the missiles in flight.
    Both Panstir and TOR use MMW radar to track targets, which as you will know doesn't suffer from ground clutter as it can detect both ground and aerial targets as the Longbow radar on the Apache D model does.

    Both missiles use lofted trajectories and don't fly at 5m height to a target flying at 5m altitude.

    The proximity fuse of the Panstir is disengaged when engaging targets below 10m and is only activated when the missile is 1km from the target to prevent it being set off by objects on the ground like tall trees or buildings or wires.

    That space adds weight and size for very limited usefulness.

    It is the avionics bay... pretty much a walk in avionics bay that you can cram 2-3 people in to in an emergency.

    In ODS the AH-64A had a readiness rate of 85%, the modern AH-64D maintains a 91%. What was a hangar queen is now a mature technology.

    Stats can tell you anything. I guess the people who maintain them are liars then.

    At the cost of weapons carried.

    The benefit of being able to hide behind a mountain and launch a UAV to fly over that mountain and look around for targets whose location can then be transmitted back to HQ without exposing a very expensive helicopter... at the cost of not carrying 6 more missiles is clearly a price well worth paying. The Ka-52 is a recon aircraft like the Commanche was going to be. Its job might include killing targets of opportunity, but I think three pylons worth of weapons and its gun would be enough for most tasks... and it would not operate alone so it would likely have three other helos with it where one gives up a pylon for UAVs and the other aircraft could engage an important target... like a truck with Osama Bin Ladin in it.

    The AH-64D and Kiowa Warrior can both put just the mast mounted mm radar (and FLIR/laser for the Kiowa)above terrain and direct fire from other units.

    And the mast mounted CM and MM wave radar on the Mi-28N is for decoration.

    The Apache can also use buddy lasing from forward units like infantry.

    A modern army would detect the laser target marker, T-90s have laser warning systems and laser proof smoke grenades that can be rapidly launched to obscure their presence.
    A guy in the front line pointing a laser at a tank would need balls of steel and would get every ones attention very very quickly.

    http://kbptula.ru/eng/zencom/panz.htm

    Missile altitude engagement range from 5m up to 10,000m

    For tunguska the lowest altitude for missiles is 15m, but is zero for guns.
    The Tunguskas missiles would be able to hit any Hellfire fired at the armoured group.

    Besides especially at night helos can't operate below 10m anyway... so it is not a huge problem.

    You do a disservice to the Republican Guard, unmotivated they were not. They fought hard.

    Flat open terrain without air control against a coalition of some of the worlds richest and most militarised countries. And the Republican Guard was not the entire Iraqi Armed force.

    The Ka-52 is an attack hello.

    No it isn't.
    The Ka-50 is an attack helo and the Mi-28N is an attack helo. The Ka-52 is something different, more like the Commanche.

    Yet everyone is developing new ATGM's.

    Most of the new ones are not specifically designed to be used from Helos. Hermes is a family of missiles with a range of terminal homing warheads that can be used from a variety of platforms including fixed wing aircraft, trucks and ships.

    Ya how well did the Iraqi air force do at that vs the masses of US tanks?

    Hahahahaha... yeah, lets learn about what works and what doesn't work in combat from the Iraqis... I guess those 13 US CVNs will be scrapped and the biggest production item for the US military will be IEDs.

    If you don't have command of the air the helo can still fly.

    Of course they can... but for how long, and how effective will those helos be with enemy fighter aircraft flying around hunting for them?

    As it turns out the ATGM is a great weapon for picking off targets in a COIN environment. It can hot a particular room in a building, or car on the street and reduce damage to the area around the target.

    I totally agree, but the key is that you need to be able to find those pin point targets in the first place and properly identify them as legitimate targets, which is why an armoured recon helo with long range sensors and long range missiles and datalinks to HQ and front line troops and UAVs it can launch to get a closer look without putting itself at risk all make good sense.

    The Israelis have shown that in COIN ops you don't need 16 ATGMs on each helo... most of the time one or two shots will do, and the choice of having 4 Hermes missiles with 30kg HE warheads and a range of 20km or 8 ATAKAs with 5kg warheads and a range of 6km gives more flexibility than 4 Hellfires with 9kg warheads and 8km range or 4 TOWs with a 4-5kg warhead with 4km range I know which I would pick and it would include helo launched UAVs that could be used to mark the target with a laser too.

    The Apache system works and leaves one eye free to monitor other things. It also preserves depth perception and the human eyes ability to track on movement sand see color. FLIR uses false color and if the pilot only has the FLIR view then colored lights cannot be seen (red, yellow etc).

    Which is why flight information is also displayed in the Russian HMS, and the Cockpit does not use coloured lights at night because it would make operating with night vision goggles pointless as well.

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  zraver on Fri Jan 28, 2011 10:23 pm

    GarryB wrote:

    Most helicopters are vulnerable to MANPADS because their engine exhausts are mounted on the sides of the aircraft which in most cases makes them perfectly visible from the front, the side and the rear.

    Your info would be right if its 1985. Modern combat helos have excellent IR suppression both passive via blocking and diffusion and active via flares and altitude. A simple look at Soviet losses in Afghanistan after re-equipped Hinds were deployed would reveal that. Manpads are too small to make use of large cooled IR imaging systems.

    Some IR suppressors actually attract some types of missiles, and side and rear engagements are preferred because the crew are less likely to see the missile launched.

    what systems actually attract missiles?

    The air search radar of the Mi-28N is mounted in a large ball structure above the main rotor and has 360 degree coverage.

    source?

    Radar guided SAMs have problems tracking low targets because of ground clutter. Pantsir and TOR use optical target tracking and use their tracking radars to transmit course corrections to the missiles in flight.
    Both Panstir and TOR use MMW radar to track targets, which as you will know doesn't suffer from ground clutter as it can detect both ground and aerial targets as the Longbow radar on the Apache D model does.

    The system still has a 10m floor because of the way missiles fly.

    Both missiles use lofted trajectories and don't fly at 5m height to a target flying at 5m altitude.

    Of course they do, but that doesn't change the 10m floor.

    The proximity fuse of the Panstir is disengaged when engaging targets below 10m and is only activated when the missile is 1km from the target to prevent it being set off by objects on the ground like tall trees or buildings or wires.

    That still doesn't matter.

    It is the avionics bay... pretty much a walk in avionics bay that you can cram 2-3 people in to in an emergency.

    Voids add space that has to be covered (increased size) and weight.

    Stats can tell you anything. I guess the people who maintain them are liars then.

    readiness rates don't lie.

    The benefit of being able to hide behind a mountain and launch a UAV to fly over that mountain and look around for targets whose location can then be transmitted back to HQ without exposing a very expensive helicopter... at the cost of not carrying 6 more missiles is clearly a price well worth paying. The Ka-52 is a recon aircraft like the Commanche was going to be. Its job might include killing targets of opportunity, but I think three pylons worth of weapons and its gun would be enough for most tasks... and it would not operate alone so it would likely have three other helos with it where one gives up a pylon for UAVs and the other aircraft could engage an important target... like a truck with Osama Bin Ladin in it.

    It is still more effective for the helo not to be a UAV carrier and leave that to a dedicated platform so the UAV's can be better monitored, recovered and larger so they can carry improved sensors and loiter longer.

    And the mast mounted CM and MM wave radar on the Mi-28N is for decoration.

    The current (I don't know about entering service)generation of Russian missiles lack the buddy fire capability. The advances in NATO armor technology at the end of the cold war meant the Russian focus was on the next generation of HEAT design to be able to defeat the armor. It was not on missile capability since the numbers of operation helicopters was too low and there was a too extreme lack of sensor fusion technology to be a worthwhile investment.


    A modern army would detect the laser target marker, T-90s have laser warning systems and laser proof smoke grenades that can be rapidly launched to obscure their presence.
    A guy in the front line pointing a laser at a tank would need balls of steel and would get every ones attention very very quickly.

    Laser detectors are not a panecea, nor is modern smoke. Lasers can be used to set off an ambush for example. An infantry laser can be used to create the image of an attack from one direction in order to turn the targets armor and sensors broad side to the real threat. Please give the US Army some credit- we spent 2 decades perfecting how to fight and win the recon battle.

    http://kbptula.ru/eng/zencom/panz.htm

    Missile altitude engagement range from 5m up to 10,000m

    Did you look at the reaction time? From the time the hellfire launch is detected assuming a launch from behind cover, the missile will have traveled over 1/4 of its maximum flight. Then there is an additional delay as the fired missile launches, stabilizes and orients on the target. That is of course assuming the oversided manpad can in fact hit a man sized target with an incredibly small rcs traveling at mach 1.3 Guns can't track that fast.

    For tunguska the lowest altitude for missiles is 15m, but is zero for guns.
    The Tunguskas missiles would be able to hit any Hellfire fired at the armored group.

    doubtful. The hellfire is a mach 1.3 weapon with a low rcs and physical size.

    Besides especially at night helos can't operate below 10m anyway... so it is not a huge problem.

    Tell that to the Iraqi radar station that got pasted on the opening night of ODS.


    Flat open terrain without air control against a coalition of some of the worlds richest and most militarised countries. And the Republican Guard was not the entire Iraqi Armed force.

    No they are not, but your comment was unmotivated in general and you implied all. The RG vs the Western allies and many of the Iraqi units vs the Arab partners fought hard and died hard. They were let down by allied control of the air and the West's superior technology. But they (RG) were not cowards and are worthy of respect as men.


    No it isn't.
    The Ka-50 is an attack helo and the Mi-28N is an attack helo. The Ka-52 is something different, more like the Commanche.

    No, the KA-52 is an attack helo. The fact that it was given a mission simialr to that of the Kiowa warrior not withstanding its a big platform. Recon helos are small nimble platforms like the Kiowa.

    Most of the new ones are not specifically designed to be used from Helos. Hermes is a family of missiles with a range of terminal homing warheads that can be used from a variety of platforms including fixed wing aircraft, trucks and ships.

    That doesn't matter, national military planners are still betting that tank is the weapon of decision. That is why huge amounts are invested in protecting and defeating tanks.

    Hahahahaha... yeah, lets learn about what works and what doesn't work in combat from the Iraqis... I guess those 13 US CVNs will be scrapped and the biggest production item for the US military will be IEDs.

    You misunderstood me. You claimed a maxim that did not hold true unless your the power who dominates the air.

    Of course they can... but for how long, and how effective will those helos be with enemy fighter aircraft flying around hunting for them?

    For longer than fixed wing assets.



    I totally agree, but the key is that you need to be able to find those pin point targets in the first place and properly identify them as legitimate targets, which is why an armoured recon helo with long range sensors and long range missiles and datalinks to HQ and front line troops and UAVs it can launch to get a closer look without putting itself at risk all make good sense.

    Go back to my comment about dedicated UAV systems.

    The Israelis have shown that in COIN ops you don't need 16 ATGMs on each helo... most of the time one or two shots will do, and the choice of having 4 Hermes missiles with 30kg HE warheads and a range of 20km or 8 ATAKAs with 5kg warheads and a range of 6km gives more flexibility than 4 Hellfires with 9kg warheads and 8km range or 4 TOWs with a 4-5kg warhead with 4km range I know which I would pick and it would include helo launched UAVs that could be used to mark the target with a laser too.

    Why did you make the choice between 4v4 and then 8v4?

    Assuming the strike is coming from a helo, I want the missile that can be fired from behind cover to mask the sound.


    Which is why flight information is also displayed in the Russian HMS, and the Cockpit does not use coloured lights at night because it would make operating with night vision goggles pointless as well.

    Good ting the Apaches use FLIR not night vision goggle.
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    GarryB

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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Sat Jan 29, 2011 2:03 am

    Your info would be right if its 1985. Modern combat helos have excellent IR suppression both passive via blocking and diffusion and active via flares and altitude. A simple look at Soviet losses in Afghanistan after re-equipped Hinds were deployed would reveal that. Manpads are too small to make use of large cooled IR imaging systems.

    Missile seeker technology has moved on too and current all aspect cooled seekers don't lock on to the hottest thing they can see anymore.

    The two colour seekers of the Igla and current stingers make individual flares useless and to be effective they need to be fired in very large numbers so they make a pattern of heat rather than a few hot spots... even then the two colour seekers can detect the difference between a helos surface that gives off IR radiation and a flare that gives off IR and UV radiation as it burns.

    There is a reason DIRCMs are being developed.

    what systems actually attract missiles?

    The arcing lamps usually located behind the main rotor that give off powerful IR signals attract older missiles that only see very hot targets.

    source?

    How about:

    http://www.roe.ru/cataloque/air_craft/aircraft_103-106.pdf

    Note I am referring to the radar called Arbalet, the Arbalet-D I think is the 360 degree radar for the Ka-32 naval helo.
    The Arbalet is a two band Ku and L band radar for aerial and ground target use...

    In the Kamov installation it has a small antenna that is mast mounted which has the CM wave antenna and the large nose mounted MMW antenna that can only detect targets in front of the aircraft.
    The Mi-28N has both antennas on the mast, which is why the ball is so much bigger than on the Ka-52.

    The system still has a 10m floor because of the way missiles fly.

    You assume the terrain will allow the helo to operate at that height.

    Of course they do, but that doesn't change the 10m floor.

    And its proximity fuse means it can detonate 5m above a helo that is sitting on the ground and still damage it.

    The Missiles have a back up air to ground capacity and within 4km so do the guns.

    Voids add space that has to be covered (increased size) and weight.

    Much of the void is created by the reduction in size of the electronics used.

    Rather than redesign the helo they used the expanding void to improve access to components making maintainence easier.

    readiness rates don't lie.

    But they also don't tell you much. The ready rates could be excellent but if it takes 100 man hours per hour of flight to keep a bird flying then you can call it a hangar queen and maintainence intensive.

    The simply fact is that just before Desert Storm the GAO had reported the Ah-64 was a Hangar Queen and not fit for war due to poor ready rates. In Desert Storm the ready rates for the Apache was 100% but at enormous cost... the Army shipped in three times the spares it normally allocated to Apache units and daily maintainence went from 2.5 hours to about 12 per day on each helo... and only half the fleet were in theatre... that is where it got its nickname of hangar queen... spending 12 hours a day in the shop with spare parts thrown at it.

    It is still more effective for the helo not to be a UAV carrier and leave that to a dedicated platform so the UAV's can be better monitored, recovered and larger so they can carry improved sensors and loiter longer.

    Bull. When a recon helo comes to the crest of a mountain and has to fly over to see what is there then you are risking a multi million dollar aircraft and two crew. Its job is not to fight the enemy, its job is to find targets.
    If it launches a UAV and that UAV finds a few targets 90% of the time that is job done and an attack mission will be organised to deal with the new targets. The weapons it carries are for self defence or targets of very high priority ONLY.

    The current (I don't know about entering service)generation of Russian missiles lack the buddy fire capability.

    The Hermes is entering service now.

    The advances in NATO armor technology at the end of the cold war meant the Russian focus was on the next generation of HEAT design to be able to defeat the armor.

    Helicopter launched missiles have the advantage that they are rarely fired at the front of the target so often don't have to deal with the heaviest armour. Having said that the effect on target has as much to do with luck as anything else with angle of impact and where the tank is hit having more effect on the result than anything else.

    Vihkr was developed in the mid 1980s and its 1200mm armour penetration from 10km made it a very potent ATGM.

    It was not on missile capability since the numbers of operation helicopters was too low and there was a too extreme lack of sensor fusion technology to be a worthwhile investment.

    What does that bollocks mean? Hinds didn't have IR let alone radar what sensors were there to fuse?

    The Soviets were the first to widely deploy ATGM with their infantry, armour and aircraft and the Russians still probably have better capabilities in killing enemy tanks than the west. On paper the Javelin is very sophisticated, but the Russians seem to have a much wider range of weapons and to be honest the Javelin is currently being used as a bunker buster in Afghanistan like Milan was in the Falklands... so even the RP0-A could do that job effectively enough out to 1,000m.


    Laser detectors are not a panecea, nor is modern smoke. Lasers can be used to set off an ambush for example.

    Hahaha... how does getting the other side to fire smoke and withdraw without casualties constitute an ambush?
    Modern smoke is formulated to be opaque to visible and IR light frequencies so the ability of IR sensors to see through some smoke is eliminated.
    The Russians are working on a C4IR system and pretty soon that laser is going to attract attention... likely first UAVs and then a SMERCH battery.

    Please give the US Army some credit- we spent 2 decades perfecting how to fight and win the recon battle.

    Well you are spending your time wisely... working on fighting the Russians will really come in handy because I am sure it will come down to who can be the most sneaky with their Recon assets that wins that nuclear war... Razz

    Did you look at the reaction time? From the time the hellfire launch is detected assuming a launch from behind cover, the missile will have traveled over 1/4 of its maximum flight. Then there is an additional delay as the fired missile launches, stabilizes and orients on the target. That is of course assuming the oversided manpad can in fact hit a man sized target with an incredibly small rcs traveling at mach 1.3 Guns can't track that fast.

    The reaction time includes acquiring the target getting a target lock, tracking the targets position and flight speed and direction, calculating an interception point orienting the launcher and preparing the missile to fire.

    At best 4 seconds at worst 6 is pretty damn good, with worst likely being system and search radar just passed the target when it pops up so it gets spotted on the next sweep.

    The Pantsir is designed to shoot down HARMs at mach 4 so I really don't think Hellfire will pose much of a problem.

    doubtful. The hellfire is a mach 1.3 weapon with a low rcs and physical size.

    During tests with Igla missiles 9 Malyutka missiles were fired and 5 were hit by Iglas.

    A Malyutka missile is better known in the west as AT-3 and is rather smaller than a Hellfire and its payload bay was replaced with a mechanism for launching flares.

    The result of the test was that the Igla-S was developed and has a proximity fuse as all the Iglas were close but with an impact fuse actual contact was needed to kill the target and 4 out of 9 didn't contact the rather small AT-3 missile.

    Yes, I know the AT-3 is very subsonic, but as I said the Pantsir is designed to hit low RCS HARMs and even bombs of various types so I think a Hellfire should be easily within its capability.

    In fact I would think guns would be perfectly effective too because I would think the first Hellfires would be fired at the Pantsir itself.

    Tell that to the Iraqi radar station that got pasted on the opening night of ODS.

    That was a long wave radar station that would be fairly useless at detecting targets below 100m. The huge threat it represented was the threat it might see stealth aircraft.

    No, the KA-52 is an attack helo. The fact that it was given a mission simialr to that of the Kiowa warrior not withstanding its a big platform. Recon helos are small nimble platforms like the Kiowa.

    Why? Who said so? The SR-71 is neither small or nimble. And who is to say the Ka-52 is not nimble?

    That doesn't matter, national military planners are still betting that tank is the weapon of decision.

    Fiji is a nation and has no tanks. New Zealand is a nation and it has no tanks. Can you be a bit more specific about who these national military planners are? If you mean NATO then of course they need the offensive capability of the tank for all their imperial interventions. For most of the rest of the world an enormous tank park is a bit of a waste of money.


    For longer than fixed wing assets.

    Well I disagree. I think helicopters are very vulnerable to airpower... more so than any other aircraft. They are at the bottom of the energy hill with little or no air search capability and when armed with air to air weapons they are the shortest range models available if not modified MANPADS. Even enemy CAS aircraft are an enormous threat to helos let alone real interceptors with modern radars and modern missiles.

    Go back to my comment about dedicated UAV systems.

    UAVs on their own are too vulnerable.

    I guess you disapprove of all the infantry UAVs the US uses to extend their sight and awareness of potential targets around them?

    Pull them out and replace them with bigger more capable UAVs controlled by vans half a world away.

    Why did you make the choice between 4v4 and then 8v4?

    Assuming the strike is coming from a helo, I want the missile that can be fired from behind cover to mask the sound.

    Hovering... even behind cover is a dangerous thing on a real battlefield... especially one with no fixed front lines. Getting behind cover to fire at a target only to find that there are threats beside and behind you mean that often distance is more use than cover.

    Hover your helo in Afghanistan and someone will take a potshot at you with an RPG. A hovering target is an easy kill and forward flying helo is not, but closing with the target all the time means standoff range needs to be excellent.

    Good ting the Apaches use FLIR not night vision goggle.

    Not really. The FLIR is like looking through a straw and having to keep sweeping all over the place because you only have one eye that can actually see outside the aircraft makes it difficult to fly. At least with NVGs you get stereo views and can see things close to the aircraft relatively clearly... and as a pilot you want to see all the trees and power lines and other things close to the aircraft at night.
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    Russia's Ka-52, Mi-28 Attack Helicopters Can Compete With US Apache

    Post  KomissarBojanchev on Tue Sep 04, 2012 10:57 pm

    It looks like a mast mounted site yet I cant see any lense on it unlike on the apache longbow.

    Is it possible that its a small radar ?

    Off Topic

    It is said that one of the main advantages of the apache regarding russian helicopters is the mast mounted site which gives them the ability to target the enemy while hovering behind ground obstacles not exposing yourself to MANPADS and AAA. How big is that advantage?
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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  TR1 on Tue Sep 04, 2012 11:02 pm

    Just as suggestion, you don't need to open a new thread for a small question that can be easily answered in one of the general Air Force/ Mi-28 threads.

    The Sphere is the Arbalet radar. The Apache does not have optics there either, both helos have optronics in the nose.

    Longbow is a nice addition to the helo, and is one thing the Mi-28 and Ka-52 lagged on for many years since development took a long time. However, the thought that an Apache can hover in a situation where the radar is above some obstacle and the helo is below it, I find to be hilariously impossible and something out of a Popular Science magazine. Certainly it has never been used like that in service, actually the radar is often removed in say Afghanistan and Iraq, due to no necessity and operational cost + weight.
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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  GarryB on Wed Sep 05, 2012 12:09 am

    The Longbow ball above the AH-64D Longbow Apache contains a MMW radar antenna that is used to scan for ground (front hemisphere about 75 degrees) and aerial targets (360 degrees).

    The ball on the Havoc will also contain two antenna arrays, except the front looking MMW radar for ground targets will have longer range, and the 360 degree antenna will be a cm wave radar with much greater range and better discromination.

    For instance the cm wave radar of Arbalet can detect an incoming stinger missile from 5km range... note a stinger is about 7cm in diameter...

    BTW I have chatted to tank commanders who say that in the 1980s an enemy helo was a real problem because they were very hard to spot let alone engage.

    These days however, with very powerful and effective thermal imagers the enormous heat generated by your average attack helo, not to mention the very distinctive pattern of main and tail rotor blades in addition to panoramic sights and data link communications makes detecting helicopters much easier... and most importantly there is very little a helo could hover behind that will stop an APFSDS round, including buildings and trees.

    As the US has found in Afghanistan hovering anywhere makes you a target for RPGs and even ATGMs, and is never as safe as it looks in the manual.


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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  KomissarBojanchev on Fri Sep 21, 2012 10:09 pm

    A lot russophobes always like use the supposed fact that the apache was superior in 20 qualities compared to the Mi-28 in an indian competition to justify that the Mi-28 is a POS.

    Can anyone debunk these claims?
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    Re: Best Attack Helicopter?

    Post  TR1 on Fri Sep 21, 2012 10:51 pm

    KomissarBojanchev wrote:A lot russophobes always like use the supposed fact that the apache was superior in 20 qualities compared to the Mi-28 in an indian competition to justify that the Mi-28 is a POS.

    Can anyone debunk these claims?

    Mi-28 was barely ready at the time, and it is still not fitted out to the same extent as Apache.
    No surprise.
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    It looks like a mast mounted site yet I cant see any lense on it unlike on the apache longbow.

    Post  GarryB on Sat Sep 22, 2012 3:02 am

    The Apache is a very good helicopter, but it is certainly not perfect.

    It has the advantages of experience as a mature system, whereas the Mi-28N is actually still pretty new and has a lot of systems still to be completed and fitted.

    The full radar suite for one, and the new helmet mounted sighting systems are another, and I would expect they will be working on the self defence avionics suite like President-S for the aircraft as well.

    If India needs an operational helo right now then the Apache is not a bad choice.

    In perhaps 5 years time when the Mi-28M is ready I rather suspect Indian Apache pilots will be a bit annoyed their government didn't wait, but I think the Apache will do a good job if you are prepared to spend the money on maintainence and spare parts needed to keep them operational.

    The main drawback of the Apache is that it is a bit of a hangar queen, but at the end of the day it is a powerful fighting tool that does what it says on the box.

    It is like buying M4s or AK12s in 2-3 years time... if you need a weapon now then the M4 is not a bad rifle. In 5 years time however you might look at the AK12 and think perhaps you should have waited a few years.


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