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US Army Light Utility Helicopter (LUH)

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posted on Jul, 2 2006 @ 01:06 PM
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So apparently this big contract (352 helicopters) has been awarded to Eurocopter, see link

www.uh-145.com...

I don't know, if it is a "paid back in advance" for future involvement in coming wars ?

The teams were:

Agusta/Westland with a military version of the AB139
Bell Helicopter with a version of the 412
MD Helicopters
Eurocopter with a version of the EC145




posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 08:07 AM
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Not too bad a choice of chopper, but as one who has spent several hundred hours in what is essentially an unstable and supposedly unflyable aircraft, it does look a mite too small.

Can it carry a troop or half troop of fully equipped combat troops like the venerable
Huey or the Blackhawk?

Perhaps it is only to be used for the 'battlefield' VIPs and their entourage.



posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 09:05 AM
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POPEYE :

maybe it won the contract because it was the best of the submitted entries .


FRITZ - it is a LIGHT utility helicopter , it is not going to replace the blackhawk

and yes it can carry 2crew + 8 passengers -- so one section can be lifted [ aluthough that leaves no room for a gunner / crew man ]



posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 11:33 AM
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Is it going to replace Md-500 and Kiowas etc?
Or some other type?



posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 05:55 PM
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Originally posted by fritz
Can it carry a troop or half troop of fully equipped combat troops like the venerable
Huey or the Blackhawk?

The huey can carry up to 30 men!
What the hell!



posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 12:27 AM
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Its a cool looking helo.

If the more you get the cheaper it is...then I dont see why the Coast Gaurd doesn't det a couple dozen, They look like they could handle that role good as well.



posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 12:31 AM
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Medical units and police units around the world have been using the same helicopters for years. I get the feeling they'll be good in the scout role. I don't see them replacing Little Birds anytime soon though. They're too big for that mission. (AH/MH-6 = MD500)



posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 03:22 AM
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Originally posted by devilwasp

Originally posted by fritz
Can it carry a troop or half troop of fully equipped combat troops like the venerable
Huey or the Blackhawk?

The huey can carry up to 30 men!
What the hell!


I know that guy, I used to fly in them! In my previous unit, a troop was 24 men & kit.

DOH!



posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 06:12 AM
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Originally posted by fritz
I know that guy, I used to fly in them! In my previous unit, a troop was 24 men & kit.

DOH!

No I mean as in "It can do that?!"

I didnt think they where that big!



posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 10:01 AM
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Hi Devil

I seem to be making a habit of apologising to you. I see what you mean now.

Please try to remember I am 54, my eyes are dim and I cannot see.



posted on Jul, 5 2006 @ 08:13 AM
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It seems some people here are not aware what the function of this helicopter would be. The aim of the LUH program basically is to introduce a modern but affordable "everyday task" helicopter for DOMESTIC use. In that function it will replace the Kiowas and UH-1.

Thats why the LUH looked for a COTS aircraft - commercially available, "off the shelf". Just for getting General Bigboy or that new shipment of morphine from A to B doesnt need a military aircraft. For this the EC145 might be the overall best solution since it incorporates the experience from 3 of the most successful Helicopters of the last 25 years: the BO-105, the BK-117 and the EC-135.

There´s a reason why Eurocopter is the biggest player on that market


[edit on 5/7/2006 by Lonestar24]



posted on Jul, 6 2006 @ 11:34 AM
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Helicopter design really hasn't come very far in 40 years has it.

This thing looks even more vulnerable to ground fire than the Huey, can it fly on one engine, why have we not moved to a tailess rotor design.

What with this thing and the selection of the "armed Jetranger" as the Commanche replacement in the light attack role, we really don't seem to be moving forward.



posted on Jul, 6 2006 @ 12:06 PM
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Originally posted by Retseh
Helicopter design really hasn't come very far in 40 years has it.


When you radically alter the design (like into the Osprey), you wont have a helicopter anymore


Anyway, there are lots and lots of improvements of the current Helicopters vs. the earlier models. They just might not be visually obvious. And one shouldnt forget that the older helicopters that still fly today have been upgraded to no end. When you compare the technical details of the vanilla UH-1 to the modern service helicopters like the NH-90 you will see that there are decades of technical and design improvements apparent.


This thing looks even more vulnerable to ground fire than the Huey, can it fly on one engine, why have we not moved to a tailess rotor design.


Errmmm... which part of "Affordable commercial model for domestic and administrative uses" did you not understand?

And there isnt a "tailless" Rotor design because these designs are more costly, unreliable, technically challenging and maintenance heavy. Even a comparably minor improvement like a Fenestron (integrated tail rotor) has its own set of challenges and possible faults.


What with this thing and the selection of the "armed Jetranger" as the Commanche replacement in the light attack role, we really don't seem to be moving forward.


Because that is all that is needed. The Comanche was an answer to a question that didnt really exist. There is simply no need for a recon helicopter with strike capabilities while at the same time there are already Apaches and Cobras for the dirty work and UCAVS for those high secrecy scout/attack missions.

There is no reason to replace the aging Kiowa with a spaceship.



posted on Jul, 6 2006 @ 05:06 PM
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Originally posted by Lonestar24
When you radically alter the design (like into the Osprey), you wont have a helicopter anymore


So why mention it ?


Anyway, there are lots and lots of improvements of the current Helicopters vs. the earlier models.


Why don't you list some that are applicable to the one helicopter we are discussing here.


Errmmm... which part of "Affordable commercial model for domestic and administrative uses" did you not understand?


All acquisitions have to be "affordable" so that statement is plainly superfluous in the original specification, and "Administrative Uses" does not mean that this thing will never get shot at, quite the contrary.


And there isnt a "tailless" Rotor design because these designs are more costly, unreliable, technically challenging and maintenance heavy.


What you say is just cracker barrel pontificating without any empirical evidence.


The Comanche was an answer to a question that didnt really exist.


The Comanche was too expensive. If as you suggest, the role did not exist, then a replacement would not be required - trouble is they just chose one, a much cheaper one.


There is no reason to replace the aging Kiowa with a spaceship.


No but there is still a need to replace the AGING Kiowas, and that replacement should offer some advances over its predecessor - which I don't believe it does.

And that, since you appear to have missed it in your desire to pontificate, was really my point.


[edit on 6-7-2006 by Retseh]



posted on Jul, 6 2006 @ 06:47 PM
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Originally posted by Retseh

Originally posted by Lonestar24
When you radically alter the design (like into the Osprey), you wont have a helicopter anymore


So why mention it ?


Because YOU stated that the Design of Helicopters hasnt changed much. Design refers to the wider concept. So if you want a radically new design, you probably WILL end up with a different product. Apparently your intention was to say that helicopter technology hasnt changed much, but you didnt say so.



Why don't you list some that are applicable to the one helicopter we are discussing here.

Fly by wire. Computerized controls. Crashworthy low-maintenance fuselages. Compound structures. Turbines. All weather capability (still not a standard in Helicopters). Glass Cockpits. Integrated self-analysing systems. Reduced Crew workload. Reduced maintenance downtime and manhours. Common parts over multiple platforms. Improved upgradeability. RELIABILITY.



All acquisitions have to be "affordable" so that statement is plainly superfluous in the original specification, and "Administrative Uses" does not mean that this thing will never get shot at, quite the contrary.


Of course all military equipment has to be somehow "affordable", but that is often not one of the main points in the initial phase - at least until it gets to Congress to nod it through. And it doesnt need a genius to read a little bit between the lines and combine the terms "affordable" and "COTS" and then come up with the impression that this new LUH is expected to trade in combat capabilities for cheap acquisition- and operating costs.

And while focusing on the affordable you missed the key word: DOMESTIC USE.


The U.S. Army is planning to acquire over 300 LUH platforms to replace aging UH-1 and OH-58 aircraft. The LUH will perform a wide range of light utility missions in the United States, including medical evacuation, passenger and logistics transportation, as well as Homeland Security operations. The Army National Guard is expected to receive the majority of these replacement aircraft.

Source


You DO realize that there are lots of civilian model vehicles and aircraft in the military that are never MEANT to see a battlefield up close, don´t you?



And there isnt a "tailless" Rotor design because these designs are more costly, unreliable, technically challenging and maintenance heavy.


What you say is just cracker barrel pontificating without any empirical evidence.


So? Lets look at a dual rotor model like the CH-47. It has two independent engines, driveshafts, rotors. That means it theoretically has twice the amount of possible sources for critical failures. Not to mention the costs for acquisition and maintenance of the dual propulsion system. You might have noticed that there wasnt a SINGLE commonly known helicopter with this design built afterwards.

Another system: NOTAR, MDs current lovechild. NOTAR still has a "tail rotor" (integrated) requiring the same transmission and rotor controls like a regular tail rotor. But in addition, it also has a rotating jet cone at the end that is necessary to direct the thrust. And its whole tail serves as an airpipe with slots and is responsible for a good deal of the stabilizing. Quite nice if you ask me... as long as noone shoots at you.

But when we pack that thing into a military helicopter, guess what happens: ANY hit to ANY part of this tail assembly is potentially catastrophic because it compromises the whole airflow thing. That just a LITTLE bit larger an area to be hit than a regular tailrotor and a thin metal transmission leading to it.



The Comanche was too expensive. If as you suggest, the role did not exist, then a replacement would not be required - trouble is they just chose one, a much cheaper one.


I repeat: the ARH is a replacement for the recon Kiowas, and not for the Comanche. The Comanche emerged from the 1983 LHX program and initially was a much more "conventional" because it was supposed to replace the UH-1, the AH-1, the OH-6 and the OH-58 Kiowa. Then some Reagan-esque committee had the "brilliant" idea to to focus on the combat role, building an Apache-meets-Star Wars hybrid. The result in the end was an over-expensive, over-engineered "worth-its-weight-in-gold aircraft that had NO niche between the, by 2004, improved AH-1Z, the Apaches and the new big thing on the block, the UAVs and UCAVs. And that is why its intended role was not existent anymore.


No but there is still a need to replace the AGING Kiowas, and that replacement should offer some advances over its predecessor - which I don't believe it does.

And that, since you appear to have missed it in your desire to pontificate, was really my point.


Funny, you clearly stated in your earlier post that you do not approve of an "armed jetranger as replacement of the Comanche in the light attack role". (not to mention that the RAH-66 already was HEAVIER and LARGER than even the Cobra...)

Rewind to start: With the Apache being the pinnacle of american helicopter power, the Cobra being its little brother and UCAVs being more interesting because you can actually afford to LOSE one of those in contrast to one 58 million $ Comanche... there still was one thing that was necessary, and that was a replacement of the Kiowas because these are beginning to "fall apart".

And there you have it, the ARH. A more modern helicopter that can fulfill EXACTLY the same mission profile like the Kiowa... cheap, COTS, proven design, and not to forget the HUGE benefit that it is derived from the Jetranger which leads to lower training expenses and possibly a certain common technology base easing up the maintenance.



posted on Jul, 6 2006 @ 07:37 PM
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Originally posted by Retseh
why have we not moved to a tailess rotor design.

no clue...But I like the design.

I would guess the only thing from stopping has to do with either maintainence or cost.

Sikorsky is building a prototype of a rotorless helicopter, called the X-2, It should make its first flight late 06.

It has a prop on the tail...to increase its speed...there shooting for around 288mph.





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