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Comanche Overview

From the Internet DJ takes out interesting material on the COMMANCHE helicopter


Comanche meets the Armed Reconnaissance challenge

  • Gives battle commanders the information needed to direct fire power on high value targets
  • Seven times quicker in visually detecting and classifying targets
  • Minimizes "friendly fire" fratricide casualties
  • Designed for the digital battlefield

Comanche sees without being seen

  • Better Night Vision & Pilotage Systems:
  • 100% Greater Resolution
  • 50% Greater Detection Range
  • 40% Greater Identification Range
  • 35% Wider Field of View

Low Detectability:

  • 200 to 600 times lower radar signature
  • 2 to 4 times lower IR signature
  • 2 to 6 times less detectable by humans (aural) and acoustic sensors (electronic)

Comanche drives down Operation and Support costs.

  • Simplified maintenance:
  • Portable intelligent maintenance aid
  • Built-in diagnostics/prognostics
  • Modular design
  • Needs only 2-level maintenance
  • Only 49 flight line maintenance tools
  • Simplified air and ground crew training:
  • Aircraft-embedded training systems
  • Initial and sustaining simulation-based aircrew training
  • Theory classes presented by an Electronic Information Delivery System
  • No maintenance training aircraft required
  • Onboard mission rehearsal system
  • Hands-on maintenance training using hardware devices

Comanche is Flexible

  • Designed for armed reconnaissance, attack, and air-combat missions
  • 1292 Comanches will replace 3100 Vietnam-era light helicopters
  • Self-deploys to Europe, Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and Central and South America
  • Rearms and refuels in under 15 minutes

Comanche is Survivable

  • Low detectability
  • Effective onboard countermeasures
  • Ballistically-tolerant composite airframe, flight controls, fuel system, and rotors
  • Redundant, self-healing electronics
  • Crashworthy airframe, landing gear, crew seats, and fuel system
  • Can operate in Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical (NBC) environments

Comanche is Lethal

  • Three-barrel turreted 20mm gun with 500 rounds
  • Internal and external missile stations
  • Advanced technology aided target detection and classification
  • Compatible with most US/NATO missiles and rockets

Comanche enhances American Technology

  • Will help the US maintain its Worldwide lead in helicopter and electronic technologies
  • Only new US helicopter development in the foreseeable future
  • Comanche-developed technologies have far-reaching applications for upgrading other defence systems
  • The cornerstone of Army modernization ensures military preparedness for the 21st century
  • 17 major aerospace manufacturers participate in the Comanche programme


The U.S. Army is developing the RAH-66 Comanche incorporating passive low observable, advanced long-range sensors, and massive processing power to give it unprecedented survivability and situational awareness.

The power of integrated technology is essential in performing 21st century tactical reconnaissance missions. Comanche's system integration pays off in many important ways:

  • The combination of low observables, 2nd-generation FLIR, and automated target classification and priority allows the Comanche to penetrate deep, acquire detailed intelligence and target data, and remain undetected.
  • It can hand off precise target positions directly to the shooters in seconds.
  • Comanche provides accurate battle damage assessments with man-in-the-loop validity.
  • Its interoperability with JSTARS/AWACS allows the battle commander to utilize Comanche to see the battlefield, understand' the enemy and shape conditions to permit decisive operations.
  • It is the only system that can successfully operate in, detect, and report biological and chemical contaminants.
  • Its secure digital software configured communications capability makes Comanche interoperable with coalition and joint forces and is the critical node in the Army's digitized battlefield network.
  • It can operate 24 hours around the clock in night, adverse weather, and battlefield obscurant conditions.

RAH-66 integrates battlefield sensors, shooters, and the tactical command and control system. The Comanche's tactical role is both offence and defence acquiring and distributing target information and battlefield intelligence to joint services intelligence, manoeuvre, and fire support elements, including armour, artillery, infantry, aviation, and USAF and Navy strike systems and applying combat power to ensure operations achieve intended results with minimum/no U.S. or Allied casualties.


Dash speed 175 knots
Cruise speed 165 knots
Vertical rate of climb 1,418 feet/minute
Maximum range 1,260 nautical miles
Power Plant
Engine type Turboshaft (2)
Maximum rated power 1,432 shaft horsepower (each)
Empty 8,690 pounds
Primary mission 10,597 pounds