Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter

Friday June 15, 2007

What is it? The Armed Reconnaissance (ARH) is the replacement aircraft for the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior. It is a combination of a modified commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) airframe integrated with a non developmental item (NDI) mission equipment package (MEP). It will provide a robust reconnaissance and security capability for the Joint / Combined arms air-ground maneuver team.

What has the Army done? Designated an Acquisition Category (ACAT) ID program at Milestone B in July 2005, a System Development and Demonstration (SDD) contract was immediately awarded. The Critical Design Review (CDR) was completed in January 2007. Since July 2005, four SDD prototype aircraft have been produced and flown. The fourth SDD aircraft crashed on its initial flight on February 21, 2007 due to the improper installation of a key component in the aircraft's fuel system. This SDD aircraft will not be flown again. However, it will be utilized for other program requirements. Due to SDD contract cost and schedule issues, the Army held an ARH Special Army Systems Acquisition Review Council (ASARC) on May 18, 2007. During the ASARC, the Army evaluated numerous options with regard to satisfying the ARH requirement. The result of the ASARC, however, was the decision by the Army to continue with Bell Helicopter/Textron Inc. as the prime contractor for the ARH.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future? The Product Management Office for the ARH is developing a detailed program replan. Once this replan is approved by Army and OSD leadership, the key acquisition milestones will be made available.

Why is this important to the Army? The ARH will be fielded to support current forces in the Global War on Terror (GWOT) and will possess the growth potential to bridge the capability gaps to the Future Force. It is the only planned replacement aircraft for the ageing OH-58D Kiowa Warrior, which is no longer in production.


- 2007 Strategic Communication Guide - Be Army Strong, and Army Smart. Read the 2007 Army Strategic Communication Guide.


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"Since the Army's founding on June 14, 1775, much has changed. Weapons have changed, uniforms have changed, technology has changed and certainly, medicine has changed. But one thing that has not changed at all is the centerpiece of your Army and the nation's defense: the Soldier, and the bedrock for that Soldier, the Soldier's family." Acting Secretary of the Army Pete Geren, speaking to Wounded Warriors at Walter Reed Army Medical Center on June 13.

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