Possible sale of 12 AH-1Z attack helicopters to Bahrain approved

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Possible sale of 12 AH-1Z attack helicopters to Bahrain approved

The AH-1Z attack helicopters would improve Royal Bahraini Air Force capability to meet current and future threats

The U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency has notified Congress on the potential Foreign Military Sale to Bahrain of 12 AH-1Z attack helicopters.

The Gulf state intends to arm them with 14 AGM-114 Hellfires, and 56 Advance Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) II.

According Defense Security Cooperation Agency’s Transmittal No: 16-36, this proposed sale would also include 15 Honeywell Embedded Global Positioning System (GPS) Inertial Navigation System (INS) (EGI) w/Standard Positioning Service (SPS) (including three (3) spares), 12 Joint Mission Planning Systems, twelve (12) M197 20mm gun systems, 30 Tech Refresh Mission Computers, 14 AN/AAQ-30 Target Sight Systems, 26 Helmet Mounted Display/Optimized Top Owl, communication equipment, electronic warfare systems, 15 APX-117 Identification Friend or Foe (IFF), 15 AN/AAR-47 Missile Warning Systems, 15 AN/ALE-47 Countermeasure Dispenser Sets, 15 APR-39C(V)2 Radar Warning Receivers, support equipment, spare engine containers, spare and repair parts, tools and test equipment, technical data and publications, personnel training and training equipment, U.S. government and contractor engineering, technical, and logistics support services, and other related elements of logistics and program support. The total estimated cost is $911.4 million.

The proposed sale improves Royal Bahraini Air Force (RBAF) capability to meet current and future threats. Bahrain will use this capability as a deterrent to regional threats and to strengthen its homeland defense.

The AH-1Z attack helicopter provides rotary wing close air support, anti-armor, armed escort, armed/visual reconnaissance and fire support coordination capabilities under day/night and adverse weather conditions for the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC).

The USMC is replacing the two-bladed AH-1W with the AH-1Z, which features a new, four-bladed composite rotor system, performance-matched transmission, four-bladed tail rotor, upgraded landing gear and a fully integrated glass cockpit. The commonality gained between the AH-1Z and the UH-1Y (approximately 85 percent) is expected to significantly reduce life-cycle costs and the aircraft’s logistical footprint, while increasing the maintainability and deployability. The AH-1Z is equipped with an integrated advanced fire control system and the capacity to support multiple weapons configurations.

Photo credit: U.S. Navy

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