Boeing-produced U.S. Army Apache Helicopter Fleet Passes Two Million Flight Hour Mark
The U.S. Army AH-64 Apache combat helicopter fleet, produced by The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA], has logged more than two million flight hours, according to recently released U.S. Army operational summary data.
Nearly one-third of all flight hours have occurred in the past four years, including almost 700,000 hours since the war on terror began following the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. Apache helicopters continue to fly hundreds of hours a month in Iraq and Afghanistan in support of peacekeeping operations.
The summary data, compiled from U.S. Army Apache deployments around the world, indicates the combat helicopter fleet reached the two million flight hour milestone in late 2005. Currently, the U.S. Army's total combined flight time for the fleet is more than 2.1 million hours.
Neither the number of combat hours logged by U.S. Army Apaches nor the total number of flight hours for all Apache helicopters worldwide has been released.
Eleven nations either fly or have selected AH-64 Apache helicopters. Nearly 1,100 Apaches, in either the AH-64A or AH-64D configuration, are in service around the world.
AH-64A Apaches, which first entered service with the U.S. Army in 1984, have logged more than 1.6 million flight hours. AH-64D Apaches have logged more than 400,000 flight hours.
"Achieving this remarkable milestone demonstrates the outstanding skills and commitment by U.S. Army soldiers in demanding conditions and challenging environments around the world," said Al Winn, Boeing vice president of Apache programs. "We're proud to provide and support this unmatched combat aircraft for the defense of freedom."
Boeing introduced the AH-64D Apache Longbow, the newest member of the Apache family, in 1997. It features fully integrated avionics and weapons plus a state-of-the-art modem that transmits real-time, secure digitized battlefield information to air and ground forces. It can rapidly detect, classify, prioritize and engage stationary or moving opposition targets at standoff ranges in nearly all weather environments.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $30.8 billion business. It provides network-centric system solutions to its global military, government and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer; a foremost developer of advanced concepts and technologies; a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in sustainment solutions and launch services.