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Boeing's first production AH-6i Little Bird completes maiden flight

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World Aviation Defense & Security Industry News - Boeing
 
 
Boeing's first production AH-6i Little Bird completes maiden flight
 
Boeing's pilots flew the first production AH-6i Little Bird light attack and reconnaissance helicopter, the US-based defense giant announced on July 27th, 2016. The AH-6i is an export variant of the AH-6S, which has been designed for the US Army's Armed Aerial Scout (AAS) programme.
     
Boeing first production AH 6i Little Bird completes maiden fligh 640 001The first production AH-6i light attack and reconnaissance helicopter took to the skies
(Credit: Boeing Defense)
     
The AH-6i is a single-turbine helicopter that is based on the combat-proven OH-6A Cayuse. It is an advanced variant of the AH-6M helicopter operated by the U.S. Army Special Operations Forces. It incorporates advanced technologies from the Boeing AH-64E Apache multirole attack helicopter.

The AH-6i helicopter features a lightweight multiple weapons support system for mounting wide range of weapons, including the M-134D 7.62mm mini-gun, GAU-19 12.7mm mini-gun, M260 seven-shot rocket pod, laser-guided 70mm Folding-Fin Aerial Rocket (FFAR) and Hellfire semi-active laser (SAL) missiles. The chopper is powered by a Rolls-Royce 250-C30R/3M engine which develops a power output of 650shp.

The AH-6 rotorcraft programme was announced by Boeing at the Association of the United States Army (AUSA) Annual Meeting and Exposition held in October 2008. Boeing began the construction of the first AH-6i prototype at its Mesa facility in early 2009. The prototype helicopter successfully completed its maiden flight in September 2009.