Army trials Hellfire II Romeo with Tiger

A Lockheed Martin AGM-114R Hellfire II Romeo laser guided air-to-ground missile fired from a Tiger Armed Reconnoissance helicopter. (Defence)
A Lockheed Martin AGM-114R Hellfire II Romeo laser guided air-to-ground missile fired from a Tiger Armed Reconnoissance Helicopter. (Defence)

Army has test fired its first Lockheed Martin AGM-114R Hellfire II Romeo laser guided air-to-ground missile from one of its Tiger Armed Reconnoissance Helicopters (ARH) at the Delamere Air Weapons Range in the Northern Territory.

The Hellfire II Romeo variant has some guidance and navigation improvements over its AGM-114M model, which is certified to be fired from Army’s fleet of Tiger ARHs.

The AGM-114R also features a variable warhead, which Lockheed Martin says is intended to work well against all three target types of armoured vehicles, fortified positions or soft and open targets, which can be selected by the aircrew while airborne without having to be pre-set prior to departure.

“Hellfire is extremely lethal and we will continue to use it into the future with some upgrades that are coming through,” said LTCOL Hayden Archibald, commanding officer of 1 Aviation Regiment (1 Avn Regt), 16th Aviation Brigade – the regiment for Army’s two operational Tiger squadrons, 161 and 162 Attack Squadrons.

“We have just conducted tests and evaluations using the AGM-114R which is a great enhancement to the Hellfire system. We will be able to program the warhead to be either an explosive fragment or an anti-tank weapon.”

The Hellfire II Romeo trial was carried out by the Army Aviation Test and Evaluation Section with support and collaboration from Airbus Group Australia Pacific instrumentation, engineering and maintenance personnel, as well as the 1 Avn Regt, the Army Aviation Training Centre, and RAAF Base Tindal.

A Lockheed Martin AGM-114R Hellfire II Romeo laser guided air-to-ground missile fired from a Tiger Armed Reconnoissance helicopter. (Defence)
Another image of the test firing. (Defence)
Another image of the test firing. (Defence)
A look at the test firing from a second aircraft. (Defence)

An in-depth profile on Tiger and 1 Avn Regt will appear in the January/February 2017 issue of Australian Aviation.

Comments

  1. ULISES VELEZ says

    NOW THE TIGER HELICOPTER IS QUALIFIED TO FIRE THE “HELL-FIRE” ANTI-TANK MISSILE. OTHER MILESTONE TO THIS HELICOPTER.

  2. Jason says

    Hellfire has been qualified on Tiger for years. This is the new version of the missile which effectively does away with the three previous separate versions.

  3. Corey says

    ULISES VELEZ

    This is a new version of the Hell Fire missiles which they’re testing to put into service to keep the ADF at the top of everyone else. The Hell Fire missiles have been in operation with the Tigers along with other aircraft in the ADF for some time. It’s a good thing to know that our ADF is testing the latest weapons so they can put only the best into service. However, it’s a shame that Airbus Helicopters wasn’t able to reach and meet the contract milestones and delayed the helicopter for some time hence the cost blowouts due to failures in the contract agreement for fixed pricing and late FOC.

  4. Myles says

    Pity the Tigers can only guide the Hellfire out to 4000m instead of the full 8000m as the EU laser system degrades to much after that. See Australian Defender Issue No. 96 Report on Tiger Performance review by the ANAO.

  5. Black Hawk Fan says

    Myles,

    That’s where an unmanned platform can be used to compliment the hellfires full weapon range. Have a Shadow sit at 4000 and lase the target and the Tiger can sit at a safer distance to release the weapon. There is a reason the ADF paid big bucks for the designators on the Shadow.