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14 octobre 2015 3 14 /10 /octobre /2015 07:20
AH-64E helicopter - photo Boeing

AH-64E helicopter - photo Boeing

 

13 October, 2015 BY: Stephen Trimble - FG

 

Washington DC - A Lockheed Martin communications system will be replaced on the Boeing AH-64E Apache fleet as the US Army moves to standardise data links for manned-unmanned teaming (MUM-T).

 

Having Apache pilots communicating and controlling unmanned air systems (UAS) in flight is a central element of the army’s strategy for replacing the armed scout role now performed by the Bell Helicopter OH-58D Kiowa Warrior. But the transition to the MUM-T future has been complicated by a fleet of UAS fielded with incompatible data links.

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6 juillet 2015 1 06 /07 /juillet /2015 11:35
Apache And Hind

 

28.06.2015 Strategy Page



An AH-64E Apache Guardian from 1st Armed Reconnaissance Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, and a Mi-35 Attack Helicopter from 31st Squadron, Tentara Nasional Indonesia Angkatan Darat, take off for a flight together during an attack/reconnaissance training mission in Semarang, Indonesia, Sept. 9. The training is part of Garuda Shield 2014, where units from United States Army Pacific are focusing on peace support training capacity and stability operations with the TNI-AD. (U.S. Army photo courtesy of 25th Combat Aviation Brigade)

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5 mars 2015 4 05 /03 /mars /2015 08:35
Taliban Troubled By Timing

 

February 19, 2015: Strategy Page

 

The U.S. Army received its first AH-64Es in 2011. Then in 2014 this most recent version of the Apache completed a seven month tour in Afghanistan. There the 24 AH-64Es with an aviation battalion performed better than expected. Each of these AH-64Es flew an average 66 hours a month while there. The readiness rate of the AH-64Es was 87 percent, compared to the army standard of 80 percent. One of the surprising new capabilities of the AH-64E was its ability to fly about 29 percent (at 288 kilometers an hour) faster that the D model. That translated into moving about one kilometer per minute faster and this cost the experienced Taliban commanders a lot of casualties. That was because these guys knew from experience how long it took a D model to arrive after the Taliban ambushed NATO forces. Suddenly the E model was showing up earlier and catching the Taliban exposed to attack rather than safely away or under cover. The AH-64E also had new electronics that enabled it to work more closely with UAVs, as in getting the video feeds directly and basically using the UAVs more effectively as scouts to spot targets. The Taliban weren’t expecting that either. NATO troops supported by the AH-64Es also noted the new capabilities and quickly began exploiting them when they knew they were getting air support from Es instead of Ds. These speed and commo capabilities were built into the AH-64E based on past experience and testing and training exercises gave pilots and ground commanders hints that these changes could be very useful. Battlefield experience confirmed that and led to new tactics for the E crews and the troops supported that no one had foreseen.

 

Testing of these new capabilities began in 2011 when the army began receiving the first of 51 "low rate initial production” AH-64s. This came three years after the first flight. These aircraft were then called the AH-64D Block III Apache helicopter gunship. It was decided in 2012 that the Block III improvements were so numerous and dramatic that it made more sense to go to a simpler and more descriptive AH-64E designation. The D model also had a name; Longbow (as it was optimized to kill tanks). The E model was called Guardian (because it was optimized for supporting infantry).

 

This goes back to the AH-64A, which was the initial model and entered service in 1986. The last AH-64A was taken out of service in 2012 for upgrade to the AH-64D standard. The AH-64B was an upgrade proposed for the early 1990s, but was cancelled, as was a similar “C” model upgrade. Some of these cancelled improvements were in great demand. Thus the “B” and “C” model upgrades were incorporated in the AH-64D Block I (1997). The AH-64D Longbow (because of the radar mast, making it possible to see ground targets and flying obstacles in all weather) models began appearing in 2002.

 

By the end of the decade 634 army AH-64Ds will be upgraded to the new AH-64E standard. The first AH-64Es entered service in 2012 and were heavily used to reveal any design or manufacturing flaws. These were fixed before mass production and conversion began in late 2013.

 

AH-64Es have more powerful and fuel efficient engines, as well as much improved electronics. AH-64Es also have Internet- like capabilities enabling these gunships to quickly exchange images, video, and so on with other aircraft and ground troops. Each AH-64E can also control several UAVs and launch missiles at targets spotted by these UAVs. The AH-64E radar has longer range and onboard computers are much more powerful than earlier ones. The electronics are easier to upgrade and maintain. The combination of improved fire control and Internet capabilities greatly increases the combat effectiveness of the AH-64.

 

The 10 ton AH-64E carries a pilot and a weapons officer, as well as up to 16 Hellfire missiles (plus the 30mm automatic cannon). Sorties average three hours. The AH-64 can operate at night and has a top speed of about 300 kilometers an hour.

 

In addition to the U.S. Army, the AH-64E the UAE (United Arab Emirates) bought 60. Neighboring Saudi Arabia ordered 70, as well as upgrades for its existing twelve AH-64s to the “E” standard. Many more of the existing 1,100 AH-64s (American and foreign) may be upgraded as well.

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5 février 2015 4 05 /02 /février /2015 17:35
Hélicoptère de combat Apache AH-64E - photo Boeing

Hélicoptère de combat Apache AH-64E - photo Boeing

 

4 février Aerobuzz.fr

 

Le succès de l’hélicoptère militaire AH-64 Apache ne se dément pas. Boeing vient, en effet, de signer un contrat portant sur huit AH-64E pour l’Indonésie. Le modèle Echo bénéficie d’un système d’arme et de moteurs améliorés par rapport à son devancier le modèle Delta. Au total le contrat rapportera 296 M$ à Boeing et ses sous-traitants.

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8 octobre 2014 3 08 /10 /octobre /2014 16:30
 - photo US Army

- photo US Army

 

8 octobre, 2014 Frédéric Lert (FOB)

 

C’est un communiqué du Pentagone qui l’annonce : ce week-end, des hélicoptères de combat Apache ont été utilisés contre des objectifs de l’Etat Islamique en Irak. Six raids distincts ont été conduits, en coordination avec des avions de l’US Air force. Les raids ont continué semble-t-il en ce début de semaine. Les appareils de l’US Army étaient revenus en Irak au début du mois de juillet pour protéger les intérêts américains et notamment la zone verte et les accès à l’aéroport à Bagdad. Les Apache étaient notamment utilisés pour escorter les convois routiers et les déplacements en hélicoptères Blackhawk. Selon certaines sources, huit Apache seraient basés à Bagdad et ils proviendraient d’unités basées en temps normal au Koweit. Lors de leur retour au mois de juillet, ils étaient accompagnés de plusieurs centaines de soldats US et de drones RQ-7 Shadow destinés à renforcer la présence américaine face à une rébellion islamiste qui commençait à gagner du terrain. Ironie de l’histoire, les attaques américaines du week end semblent s’être concentrées sur la région de Falloujah, une ville dont la conquête avait déjà coûté tant d’effort aux Américains en 2004.

 

 

Iraq's first Mi-28 Havoc attack helicopter

Iraq's first Mi-28 Havoc attack helicopter

Le président Obama a déjà annoncé dans les semaines passées qu’aucun soldat américain ne prendrait part aux combats au sol. L’engagement des hélicoptères, optimisés pour un soutien direct des combattants et des combats en zone urbaine peut être diversement perçu : face aux armes automatiques et aux missiles portables, les risques de perte sont singulièrement plus élevés qu’avec des avions de combat.  A noter enfin que les Irakiens ont depuis longtemps demandé à acheter leurs propres Apache : le Pentagone avait annoncé en début d’année la vente possible de 24 appareils, sans que celle-ci ait pour l’instant abouti. Lassés d’attendre, les Irakiens se sont depuis tournés vers les Russes. Ils auraient reçu récemment trois hélicoptères de combat Mi28 « Havoc ». Environ 350 raids aériens ont été montés à ce jour contre les forces de l’Etat Islamique, dont les trois quarts en territoire irakien.

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28 avril 2014 1 28 /04 /avril /2014 16:35
Crash d’un hélicoptère Apache : la Défense de Taiwan annonce une commission d’enquête

Aucune perte humaine n 'est heuresement à déplorer dans cet accident, a noté le ministère de la Défense. CNA

 

 

Après l’accident d’un hélicoptère de combat de type AH-64E, survenu vendredi dernier dans le district de Taoyuan, au nord de Taiwan sans faire aucune victime, le ministère de la Défense a annoncé la mise en place d’une commission d’enquête.

 

Une erreur humaine, les conditions climatiques ou une défaillance technique, aucune de ces pistes n’est écartée, a-t-on déclaré vendredi dernier au ministère de la Défense, à l’annonce de la mise en place de la commission d’enquête destinée à élucider les circonstances qui ont provoqué l’atterrissage en catastrophe de l’hélicoptère sur un immeuble de trois étages dans la commune de Longtan. Les 17 autres Apache AH-64E de l’Armée de l’air sont maintenus au sol, a par ailleurs précisé la Défense. Ces appareils de combat ont été acquis auprès des Etats-Unis entre novembre 2013 et mars 2014, et font partie d’une commande de 30 hélicoptères d’un montant total de 2,01 milliards de dollars américains. La vente avait été annoncée en 2008 par le président des Etats-Unis de l’époque, George Bush. Le 13 mars 2013, les 18 Apache avaient vu leur système de transmission remplacé après un certain nombre de problèmes mécaniques constatés aux Etats-Unis sur le même type d’appareil.

Le major Chen Lung-chien [陳龍謙], instructeur de vol avec 1 247 heures de vol dont 350 sur cet hélicoptère, et son co-pilote, le lieutenant-colonel Liu Ming-hui [劉銘輝], avec 1034 heures de vol mais aucune sur ce type d’appareil, n’ont été que légèrement blessés dans cet accident. Quatre habitations ont été endommagées par la chute de l’hélicoptère.

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28 novembre 2013 4 28 /11 /novembre /2013 12:20
L’AH-64E Apache obtient son IOC

La cérémonie de délivrance de l'IOC de l'AH-64E sur la base Lewis-McChord. Photo US Army

 

27.11.2013 Helen Chachaty journal-aviation.com

 

L’US Army annonce ce mercredi que la dernière version des hélicoptères d’attaque Apache de Boeing, l’AH-64E, avait obtenu son IOC (Initial Operating Capability), première certification au standard militaire, lors d’une cérémonie qui s’est tenue le 21 novembre dernier sur la base Lewis-McChord, dans l’Etat de Washington.

 

Le bataillon d’attaque et de reconnaissance 1-229, « Tigersharks » avait reçu le premier exemplaire de l’AH-64E en janvier 2013. Les premiers déploiements à l’étranger sont prévus pour 2014.

 

L’AH-64 Apache a été mis en service en 1984 dans l’US Army, la flotte a accumulé depuis plus de 3,7 millions d’heures de vol, dont 6 000 pour la dernière version en date, l’AH-64E.

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12 novembre 2013 2 12 /11 /novembre /2013 12:50
Army Air Corps Apache attack helicopter takes off from the deck of the Royal Navy's amphibious assault helicopter carrier HMS Ocean - photo UK MoD

Army Air Corps Apache attack helicopter takes off from the deck of the Royal Navy's amphibious assault helicopter carrier HMS Ocean - photo UK MoD

 

November 10, 2013 by martin – Think Defence

 

Due to the ongoing sequestration and budget battle in Washington the US Army has been forced to delay its Apache new build and rebuild programs to AH 64 E standards. This means the current type as used by the British Army is likely to be supported for longer giving the MOD some vital breathing space to decide what to do about its Apaches.

 

Currently UK thinking seems to be slanted towards going for a rebuild on the current fleet but reported costs for the US program would put a rebuild on the entire UK Apaches fleet some where north of $600 million which is probably not something the MOD can consider for the next few years at the very least.

 

However as the rebuild will see the fuselage and main rotor replaced, if it was to go ahead would it be worth the UK looking at a marinised version? The aircraft is said to have performed very well from Ocean but it has some severe maintenance issues when being used in a salt water environment. Could a rebuild offer us the chance to solve some of these issues and produce a truly purple asset.

 

ADEX 2013: US sequestration buys time for UK Apache decision makers

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1 novembre 2013 5 01 /11 /novembre /2013 12:20
LONGBOW Receives $92 M LCCS Award for US Army's Apache Helicopter

 

 

Oct 31, 2013 ASDNews Source : Lockheed Martin Corporation

 

LONGBOW LLC, a joint venture between Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, received a $92.8 million contract from the U. S. Army to provide Life Cycle Contractor Support (LCCS) for LONGBOW programs on the AH-64D and AH-64E helicopters.

 

The LCCS contract provides integrated logistics support for LONGBOW Fire Control Radar (FCR) systems equipping AH-64D and AH-64E Apache helicopters. The contract also includes support for the AH-64E Unmanned Aerial System Tactical Common Data Link Assembly (UTA) and upgraded FCR Radar Electronics Unit (REU). The period of performance for the LCCS contract extends through 2016.

 

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13 septembre 2013 5 13 /09 /septembre /2013 07:35
LONGBOW LLC Receives $51 Million Contract for Republic of Korea Apache Radar Systems

September 12, 2013 GLOBE NEWSWIRE

 

ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 12, 2013 – The LONGBOW Limited Liability Company, a joint venture of Lockheed Martin [NYSE:LMT] and Northrop Grumman [NYSE:NOC], received a $51 million foreign military sales contract to provide the Republic of Korea with LONGBOW Fire Control Radars (FCRs) for the AH-64E Apache attack helicopter.

 

The contract includes six LONGBOW FCR systems, spares and in-country support. Production is scheduled through 2016, with assembly of the LONGBOW FCR performed at Lockheed Martin's Ocala and Orlando, Fla., facilities, and Northrop Grumman's Baltimore, Md., facility.

 

"The Republic of Korea is the 10th international customer for LONGBOW systems," said Tom Eldredge, LONGBOW LLC president and director of LONGBOW programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "The LONGBOW FCR is a battle-proven radar system that will provide Republic of Korea Apache pilots with increased situational awareness, survivability and lethality."

 

"The LONGBOW FCR team will provide the Republic of Korea with a product that promotes greater regional security and provides warfighters with the highest level of protection while increasing the international Apache footprint," said Mike Galletti, director of the Tactical Sensor Solutions-Aviation business unit for Northrop Grumman's Land and Self Protection Systems Division.

 

Since 1998, LONGBOW FCR has provided Apache aircrews with target detection, location, classification and prioritization. In all weather, over multiple terrains and through any battlefield obscurant, the radar allows automatic and rapid multitarget engagement.

 

Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in unmanned systems, cyber, C4ISR, and logistics and modernization to government and commercial customers worldwide.

 

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control is a 2012 recipient of the U.S. Department of Commerce's Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award for performance excellence. The Malcolm Baldrige Award represents the highest honor that can be awarded to American companies for achievement in leadership, strategic planning, customer relations, measurement, analysis, workforce excellence, operations and business results.

 

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 116,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration, and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products, and services. The Corporation's net sales for 2012 were $47.2 billion.

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27 août 2013 2 27 /08 /août /2013 11:35
US Army combat helicopter – AH-64E.

US Army combat helicopter – AH-64E.

26/08 LesEchos.fr (Reuters)

 

L'armée indonésienne va acquérir huit hélicoptères américains Apache dans le cadre d'un contrat de 500 millions de dollars (374 millions d'euros) comprenant aussi la fourniture de radars et de services de formation et de maintenance, a-t-on appris lundi de source militaire américaine.

 

La vente des huit appareils AH-64E, fabriqués par Boeing , a été annoncée lors d'une visite à Djakarta du secrétaire américain à la Défense Chuck Hagel, actuellement en tournée dans le Sud-Est asiatique.

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26 juin 2013 3 26 /06 /juin /2013 16:20
Army Ready to Upgrade AH-64E Apache Sensors

June 26th, 2013 by Matt Cox  - defensetech.org

 

The U.S. Army hopes to equip its first unit of Apache helicopters with the newest daytime sensors by this time next year.

 

The Apache Sensors Product Office recently accepted delivery of Lockheed Martin’s new Modernized Day Sensor Assembly Laser Rangefinder Designator, or LRFD, the first component to be fielded in the Modernized Day Sensor Assembly.

 

The modernized LRFD is the first phase of upgrades for the M-DSA program, and will provide enhanced performance to the MTADS/PNVS system, Army officials maintain.

 

“This laser kit, what we call M-DSA phase one, is an investment by the Army and the Program Executive Office for Aviation, and we’re looking forward to the reliability and maintainability improvements that this laser will bring to the MTADS system,” said  Lt. Col. Steven Van Riper, product manager for Apache Sensor, in an Army press release. “The maintainers will have less of a burden when it comes to keeping the system up and fully operational, while our aircrews will be able to reap the benefits of the performance improvements.”

 

The new sensors are part of a duel contract the Army awarded to Lockheed Martin in February worth $162 million.

 

The current laser features a tactical wavelength in the system, Cold War technology that’s expensive to maintain. The new laser incorporates a second EyeSafe wavelength, the newest technology available. It replaces the old flash lamp technology to a more reliable, more robust diode pump laser technology.

 

The diode pump is the primary driver of increasing the Army’s reliability and maintainability numbers, Army officials maintain. Phase one will be fielded later this year and will be fully capable by 2016, according to Matt Hoffman, director of MTADS/PNVS programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.

 

The Army’s goal is to retrofit the M-DSA and equip the AH-64E Apache units first.

 

The second phase, scheduled to begin in 2016, will include all the remaining elements in the DSA such as a high definition color television, laser pointer marker, upgraded laser spot tracker, and a state-of-the-art inertia measuring unit for stability and extended range in the system.

 

“We are meeting all of our milestones in terms of production ramp rate, moving towards maintaining our production rate of over 20 lasers per month,” Van Riper said. “We’re stepping up to that incrementally using a very deliberate production engineering process.”

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14 mars 2013 4 14 /03 /mars /2013 13:20
US Army fields first AH-64E Apache Guardian helicopter

 

14 March 2013 army-technology.com

 

The US Army's 1-229th Attack Reconnaissance Battalion (ARB) has fielded the first AH-64E Apache attack helicopter during a ceremony at Gray Army Airfield within Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington, US.

 

Eight out of 24 helicopters were received by the battalion, since January 2013, and all are scheduled to be operational by the end of April this year.

 

Known as Guardian, the new heavily-armed helicopter features more powerful, fuel-efficient T700-GE-701D engines, enhanced rotor blade technology, as well as advanced electronics, and is designed to replace the army's existing AH-64D Longbow model helicopters.

 

Other features include improved drive system and sensor enhancements, improved handling and performance, as well as the ability to hover at 6,000ft with a full mission payload, providing pilots with more control during high-altitude operations.

 

Commenting on the helicopter, 1-229th Attack Reconnaissance Battalion commander lieutenant colonel Geoffrey Crawford said it would increase the battalion's lethality and survivability, while also improving its ability to support ground forces.

 

"The increased power will now allow us to stay on the objective longer and with more ammunition," Crawford added.

 

With a combat speed of around 189mph, the helicopter, which was formerly known as AH-64D Block III, can turn faster and tighter in challenging environments, and also provide pilots with options to remotely operate nearby unmanned aerial vehicles/systems.

 

In addition, 1-229th ARB maintenance test pilot chief warrant officer 3 Richard Crabtree said: "They can view UAV camera feeds, adjust their flight path and launch missiles at targets spotted by the UAV."

 

The battalion flight crews are scheduled to conduct familiarisation training using the actual aircraft and AH-64E flight simulators at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, in addition to training in preparation for upcoming rotations to the Army's National Training Center (NTC) later this year.

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10 janvier 2013 4 10 /01 /janvier /2013 17:20
US Army fields first AH-64E unit, but more improvements to come

 

Jan. 10, 2013 by Dave Majumdar – FG

 

Washington DC - Even as the US Army moves forward with fielding its first unit of Boeing AH-64E Block III attack helicopters, the service is planning to add further improvements to the Apache gunship.

 

"Right now, we are currently fielding the first unit equipped, our FUE [first unit equipped] unit, with Echo-models, and we're on track to meet that fielding schedule," says Col Jeff Hager, the army's Apache programme manager.

 

Hager adds that Boeing has delivered 28 of 51 low-rate initial production AH-64Es that it is contracted to build. This year, the company will start producing full-rate production aircraft for an eventual total of 634 helicopters.

 

But even as the AH-64E transitions into full-rate production, some systems engineering work remains, Hager says. The changes, which will come in production Lots 4 through 6, include better embedded diagnostics for improved maintenance. The Apache will also gain the Link-16 data-link, which is typically found on fixed-wing combat aircraft. It will also be afforded improvements to its mast-mounted Northrop Grumman APG-78 Longbow fire control radar, which will improve range and add overwater capability.

 

Hager says that the army has not quite decided how the overwater capability would be used, but he says the Longbow radar in concert with the Lockheed Martin AGM-114 Hellfire missile could be used to attack landing craft or small warships. In the future, active electronically scanned array radar could be added to the aircraft.

 

Another addition will be the cognitive decision aiding system (CDAS), Hager says. CDAS is designed "to help the pilot and the crew with some of those tasks that tend to get a little cumbersome at times," he says. "It'll help him in those tasks in specific."

 

The army also intends to support Boeing's efforts to sell the Apache overseas, Hager says. Boeing's attack helicopter vice president, Dave Koopersmith, says that the company has seen an uptick in interest internationally for the Apache recently. "We have more demand signals for this dominant capability in this attack helicopter space," he says.

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25 octobre 2012 4 25 /10 /octobre /2012 06:10
US Army to re-designate Block III Apache as AH-64E

 

Oct. 24, 2012 by Dave Majumdar – FG

 

Washington DC - The US Army is re-designating the Boeing AH-64D Block III Apache as the AH-64E.

 

The decision comes as the upgraded attack helicopter is moved into full rate production after a successful operational test phase.

 

The Block III has a significant enough boost in capabilities to warrant the change in designation, says Boeing's Ray Handy, marketing manager and a pilot for the AH-64.

 

The soon-to-be E-model's rotor blades are made of composites and the airfoil is shaped differently, he says. Moreover, the entire drive system has been completely revamped, with the engines and transmission significantly upgraded. "It's a completely new gearbox," Handy says.

 

The new drive system, in many respects, restores performance of the helicopter to earlier days. The introduction of the D-model in the 1990s added a large amount of weight to the aircraft over the years.

 

"It has taken us back to the days when the Apache was a much lighter aircraft," says Todd Brown, Boeing's chief rotary-wing test pilot. The E-model is similar in performance to the much lighter A-model helicopter, he adds.

 

The Block III's avionics have also been greatly improved. The biggest change is that the system has moved to an open-architecture design. But there have also been improvements to the flight controls and flight management systems.

 

The aircraft's mission capabilities have also been greatly improved, although Brown declines to elaborate. However, Boeing says one of the biggest improvements in that regard is the addition of a level four manned-unmanned teaming system, which will allow the aircraft's crew to work with unmanned air vehicles.

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