Home > Helicopters > Boeing / Sikorsky RAH-66 Comanche

Boeing/Sikorsky RAH-66 Comanche

Reconnaissance and attack helicopter

 RAH-66 Comanche reconnaissance and attack helicopter was cancelled

Program of the RAH-66 Comanche reconnaissance and attack helicopter was cancelled

Entered service -
Crew 2 men
Dimensions and weight
Length 14.28 m
Main rotor diameter 11.9 m
Height 3.37 m
Weight (empty) 4.06 t
Weight (maximum take off) 7.9 t
Engines and performance
Engines 2 x LHTEC T800-LHT-801 turboshaft engines
Engine power 2 x 1 432 shp
Maximum speed 319 km/h
Service ceiling ?
Range 2 334 km (with drop tanks)
Cannon 1 x 20-mm three-barrel cannon in undernose turret
Missiles up to 3 x Hellfire ATGMs or 6 x Stinger AAMs in two weapon bays or 8 x Hellfires / 16 x Stingers on optional stub wings
Other Hydra-70 unoperated rocket pods in place of the missiles


   The US Army's ambitious LHX (Light Helicopter Experimental) program called for a new armed reconnaissance/scout helicopter to replace the service's force of 3 000 AH-1s, OH-6s and OH-58s. A request for proposals was issued in June 1988, and 23-month demonstration and validation contracts were placed with two industrial teamings: the 'Super Team' (Bell and McDonnell Douglas) and the 'First Team' (Boeing and Sikorsky). In April 1991 the designation and name RAH-66 Comanche were selected and the First Team was announced as winner. The Comanche is designed for minimum observability and is based on a stealthy airframe built largely of composite materials. Its advanced avionics are designed for maximum commonality with the F-22 Raptor, and include dual triplex fly-by-wire control systems with sidestick cyclic pitch controllers, a 'glass' cockpit with two large liquid-crystal displays in each cockpit, advanced crew helmet displays and sights, a comprehensive self-protection suite, and provision for Longbow radar.

   Development of the RAH-66 Comanche has been slowed by technical considerations as well as political antipathy and budgetary delays. The definitive program emerged in 1995, and called for two YRAH-66 flying prototypes (the first flying on 4 January 1996) plus six 'early operational capability' helicopters with reconnaissance equipment but no armament for trials from 2001. In 1998 the planned total was 1 292 helicopters with the possibility of 389 to be added later, however the whole programme was canceled in 2004.

Video of the RAH-66 Comanche reconnaissance and attack helicopter

RAH-66 Comanche

RAH-66 Comanche

RAH-66 Comanche

RAH-66 Comanche

© Copyright 2015 military-today.com.