by Elizabeth Shim
Seoul (UPI) Dec 29, 2016
South Korea's military deployed powerful AH-64E Apache helicopters for the first time during an exercise Thursday.
The AH-64E, which features digital cockpit avionics and powerful engines, would be used to target incoming North Korea military tanks, Yonhap reported.
The 30-millimeter chain gun located under the aircraft's forward fuselage, as well as mounted rockets, can hit targets within a 1.25-mile range, according to the report.
The Apache's rocket launcher can carry several 2.75-inch aerial rockets.
The exercise involving six Apache helicopters was held at a military range in Yangpyeong, in South Korea's Gyeonggi Province, an area near Seoul.
South Korea first brought in Apache helicopters in May.
The exercise held Thursday included the firing of 30 rounds of ammunition from the helicopter's chain gun and the launch of two aerial rockets.
A second phase of the exercise included the firing of 10 rounds of ammunition and 12 South Korean pilots were involved in the training, according to the report.
Seoul's Army Chief of Staff Jang Jun-gyu told Yonhap the "Apache just in appearance is enough to give fear and send shivers to the enemy."
Jang also asked pilots to step up training for nighttime and bad weather conditions.
The military plans to phase in 36 Apaches in 2017.
The helicopters would be responsible for defeating North Korean tanks coming across the demilitarized zone as well as incoming hovercraft.
Aerospace News at SpaceMart.com
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