The OH-58F Kiowa Warrior

Wednesday May 18, 2011

What is it?

The OH-58F is the planned upgrade of the OH-58D and will provide leap-ahead technology and increased capability through the implementation of a Cockpit and Sensor Upgrade Program (CASUP) which includes: advanced nose mounted sensor, improved cockpit control hardware and software for enhanced situational awareness, three full color multi-function displays, dual-redundant digital engine controller for enhanced engine safety, digital inter-cockpit communications, digital HELLFIRE future upgrades, Aircraft Survivability Equipment (ASE) upgrades, and a redesigned aircraft wiring harness. The FOX model will also integrate Level 2 Manned Unmanned Teaming, Common Missile Warning System (CMWS), Health and Usage Monitoring (HUMS), and enhanced weapons functionality via 1760 digital interface.

What has the Army done?

The mission of the KW CASUP program is simple: develop a robust, fast aircraft modification program to address obsolescence, reduce weight and deliver advanced capability to the Aviation Warfighter. A key feature of the next evolution of the Kiowa replaces the OH-58D mast-mounted surveillance and targeting system, which was designed to look over trees and down-range for Russian tanks, with a nose-mounted, downward-looking system better suited to deserts and mountains.

What does the Army have planned for the future?

Seven aircraft will be produced during the CASUP's Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) phase. The first flight of the OH-58F configuration is currently planned for the 4th quarter of 2012. Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) for OH-58D to OH-58F modification is scheduled to begin immediately after the Milestone C review currently planned for March 2014. The current acquisition strategy is to modify the entire OH-58D fleet. The approved Army Procurement Objective is 368 aircraft. In an era of tight budgets, the Army has made the OH-58F upgrade program one of its highest priorities.

Why is this important to the Army?

With the cancellation of the ARH-70A Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter (ARH) on Oct. 16, 2008, it became abundantly clear that the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior would have to remain on the front line for the foreseeable future. The venerable KW is a proven work horse for the war fighter and even today remains the go-to asset for theater ground commanders, having flown more than 750,000 hours, surpassing all other Army rotary wing platforms in readiness, and executing an OPTEMPO five times the normal rate. The FOX model Kiowa Warrior is a significant investment into the OH-58D fleet and will ensure the Kiowa Warrior continues to be a combat multiplier on the Joint/combined battlefield across the full spectrum of military operations.

Resources:

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INFORMATION YOU CAN USE

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Twilight Tattoo 2011

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SENIOR LEADERS ARE SAYING

"I just really hope that we can form a more personal relationship. My experience from the last 10 years with countries in south Asia suggests that real conversation only begins when you have a relationship, and we don't have a relationship now. I think that step one is building that relationship and step two is getting a better understanding of each other."

- Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, emphasized the intent of the joint performances of the U.S. Army Band "Pershing's Own" and the Military Band of the People's Liberation Army of China, as part of a military-to-military exchange, before the concert began at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., May 16

U.S., Chinese Army bands perform together in historic concert

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING

"It may be that our piece of this military-to-military exchange will serve as some sort of example to the public and the leaders of these countries that you have to start somewhere. The fact that we can get ourselves together and communicate in the common language of music is a starting place."

- Maj. Dwayne Milburn, director of the Army Chorus, speaks positively about the efforts of the joint concerts of the U.S. Army Band "Pershing's Own" and the Military Band of the People's Liberation Army of China in helping to build a better relationship between the U.S. and Chinese armies.

U.S., Chinese Army bands perform together in historic concert

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