MD530G Scout Attack Helicopter. Photo courtesy of MD Helicopters
MD Helicopters continues to rack up orders for the MD530 with the purchase of six G-model attack helicopters by Lebanon under a $1.4 billion ongoing contract the company has with the U.S. government.
It is the third delivery order in the past 12 months for MD under the indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract. The IDIQ contract estimates that a total 150 MD aircraft — armed MD530F Cayuse Warriors and MD530G attack helicopters — will be delivered to U.S. and partner nation military aviation forces by September 2022.
The Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) bought six MD-530F Cayuse Warrior helicopters built by MD Helicopters, the company said Sept. 27. Deliveries will begin in April 2019 and continue through August.
In September, five MD530F Cayuse Warriors were delivered to the Afghan Air Force through the same contract. MDHI completed the delivery to Kandahar, Afghanistan Aug. 8, less than 10 months after the contract award, and will deliver 25 more 530Fs to the service by September 2019.
The Malaysian Ministry of Defense also bought six MD530Gs through a direct commercial sale.
Awarded through U.S. Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, MDHI’s new MD 530G will receive a U.S. Army Airworthiness Release (AWR) by December 2019.
With the award on behalf of the Lebanon Air Force, nearly 30% of the estimated 150 aircraft available to U.S. and partner nation military forces under the indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract are in production.
The order includes initial logistics support for the aircraft, as well as aircraft systems, ground support equipment and associated services.
All MD530G aircraft deliveries to the Lebanon Air Force will be complete by the fourth quarter of 2020, according to the company.
“The Armed MD 530G Scout Attack Helicopter is a masterpiece in design and innovation,” said MD CEO Lynn Tilton. “With advanced avionics, integrated weapons and mission management systems, and an armament suite that delivers both precision lethality and suppressive fire capabilities, we are honored to receive this order, and look forward to delivering these highly capable aircraft to the Lebanon Air Force.”
Lebanon’s armed MD530G Scout Attack Helicopter will feature the company’s next-generation all-glass cockpit with two Genesys Aerosystems IDU-680 6-inch-by-9-inch LCD primary displays; Tek Fusion Global’s PATHFINDER Mission Management System (MMS) and “ARES” Weapons Management System (WMS) on dual side-mounted mission displays.
The MD530G Scout Attack Helicopter also comes with a DillonAero Mission Configurable Armament System (MCAS), 62-mm ballistic armor protection, ballistically tolerant crashworthy fuel system with main and auxiliary tanks, FN Herstal .50-caliber HMP400 machinegun pods, M260 seven-shot rocket pods, advanced precision kill weapons system (APKWS) rockets, a WESCAM MX-10D EO/IR laser designator and the Scorpion helmet-mounted cueing system from Thales.
The Lebanon Air Force MD530G helicopters will also feature the Harris Falcon III RF-7850A-MR multi-channel airborne networking radios with advanced encryption standards (AES).
“Returning MD Helicopters to its legacy position as the preferred manufacturer of light scout attack helicopters has been a gratifying journey,” Tilton said. “I could not be more proud to have two individual aircraft models simultaneously under contract with the U.S. Army; both with the distinction of having full, U.S. Army-issued AWRs.”