Apache Choppers Returning to Old Power Generators After Multiple Failures

Boeing will reinstall old power generators into its AH-64E Apache helicopters after an uptick in electrical failures.

Company official John Chicoli recently told reporters that the choppers will return to using a Honeywell “-7” generator after the upgraded version (-11) was flagged for causing breathing and visibility problems for pilots.

Before making the decision, the Virginia-based firm performed a modification on the Apaches, allowing them to automatically shut down a compromised generator as soon as a fault was detected.

Chicoli clarified that installing the old generators is an interim solution as Boeing is already on the hunt for new options.

“A long-term solution is under investigation,” he said, as quoted by Breaking Defense. “Engineering effort will commence once the program is funded.”

The Issue

In 2023, a US Army aviation spokesman revealed that the AH-64E Apache helicopters have experienced a significant increase in power generator failures over the last two years, causing “potentially hazardous flight conditions.”

He said thick smoke often filled the cockpit due to the incident, resulting in precautionary landings.

Despite the failures, Chicoli clarified that the power generator issues had not been linked to Apache fatal crashes in recent months.

Regarded as one of the most advanced attack helicopters in the world, the AH-64E Apache is designed to find and destroy air, ground, and sea assets using Hellfire missiles and wing-mounted 70-millimeter Hydra rockets.

Among the countries that use the Boeing chopper are the US, Israel, Japan, Korea, India, Australia, and the UK.

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