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New Weapon Loaded: IAF Gets First Attack Chopper Apache Guardian

PW Bureau

Known as flying tanks Apache 'AH-64E (I) has been customized to suit IAF’s future requirements and would have significant capability in mountainous terrain

Arizona, USA: Adding more muscle power to the formidable Indian airforce, the first ever Apache guardian has formally been handed over to the Indian Air Force at Boeing production facility in Mesa, Arizona, USA on Friday, May 10, 2019. Air Marshal AS Butola, represented the Indian Air Force and accepted the first Apache in a ceremony at Boeing production facility, representatives from US Government were also present.

[caption id="attachment_7405" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Alt="First ever Apache guardian being handed over to the Indian Air Force" First ever Apache guardian being handed over to the Indian Air Force at Boeing production facility in Mesa, Arizona, USA[/caption]

'Flying tanks loaded'

Attack chopper Apache guardian AH-64E (I), is also known as flying tanks because of its incisive capability to destroy tanks with precision. Fitted with missiles, Apache helicopters are capable of detecting 256 moving targets and engaging them. Apache, a twin-engined helicopter, is operated by two pilots.

22 Apache ordered, delivery begins July 2019

Indian AirForce had signed a contract with US Government and Boeing Ltd in Sep 2015 for 22 Apache attack helicopters. The first batch of these helicopters is scheduled to be shipped to India by Jul this year. Selected aircrew and ground crew have undergone training at the training facilities at US Army base Fort Rucker, Alabama. These personnel will lead the operationalisation of the Apache fleet in the IAF.

[caption id="attachment_7406" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Alt="Apache is also known as flying tanks because of its incisive capability to destroy tanks" Selected IAF aircrew have undergone training at US Army base Fort Rucker, Alabama[/caption]

Apache customized to Indian requirements

The addition of AH-64 E (I) helicopter is a significant step towards modernisation of Indian Air Force’s helicopter fleet. The helicopter has been customized to suit IAF’s future requirements and would have significant capability in mountainous terrain. The helicopter has the capability to carry out precision attacks at standoff ranges and operate in hostile airspace with threats from the ground. The ability of these helicopters, to transmit and receive the battlefield picture, to and from the weapon systems through data networking makes it a lethal acquisition. These attack helicopters will provide a significant edge in any future joint operations in support of land forces.