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KAI / Boeing KUS-VJ

Unmanned Attack Helicopter Gunship

KAI / Boeing KUS-VJ

Unmanned Attack Helicopter Gunship

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



The KUS-VJ is a unmanned rotary-wing gunship platform based on the MD500 and being proposed by Korean Air with technical assistance from Boeing.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: South Korea
YEAR: 2020
STATUS: In-Development
MANUFACTURER(S): Korean Air - South Korea / Boeing Company - USA
PRODUCTION: 1
OPERATORS: South Korea (possible)
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the KAI / Boeing KUS-VJ model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 0
LENGTH: 23.00 feet (7.01 meters)
WIDTH: 26.35 feet (8.03 meters)
HEIGHT: 8.53 feet (2.6 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 1,323 pounds (600 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 2,866 pounds (1,300 kilograms)
ENGINE: Estimated: 1 x Allison 250-C20B turboshaft engine developing 420 horsepower and driving five bladed main rotor and four-bladed tail rotor.
SPEED (MAX): 162 miles-per-hour (260 kilometers-per-hour; 140 knots)
RANGE: 435 miles (700 kilometers; 378 nautical miles)
CEILING: 13,862 feet (4,225 meters; 2.63 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 1,700 feet-per-minute (518 meters-per-minute)




ARMAMENT



Variable - ordnance held across two wingstubs along fuselage sides and can include (in pairs of in single installation):

TOW Anti-Tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs)
7.62mm General Electric M134 miniguns
Stinger short-range air-to-air missiles
Seven-shot rocket pods
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• KUS-VJ - Proposed series designation


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the KAI / Boeing KUS-VJ Unmanned Attack Helicopter Gunship.  Entry last updated on 1/2/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The rise of unmanned attack aircraft over the battlefield is quite apparent to even the casual observer and Korean Air (Korean Aerospace Industries - KAI) of South Korea, along with U.S.-based Boeing, have agreed to jointly develop an unmanned, attack-minded version of the successful MD500 series light helicopter. With a large stock of aging MD500 units available to the South Korean Air Force, the project would see conversions of these systems to an unmanned model - designated "KUS-VH". A full-sized mock-up of the proposed product was seen at Seoul Aerospace & Defence Exhibition 2015.

Without the need of a pilot the helicopter will now see a reduced operational commitment over the battlescape. The passenger cabin is to be taken up by a large internal fuel tank increasing the operational range of the helicopter by 100%. The windscreen surfaces common to the MD500 will be shrouded over. By and large the overall form and function of the unit will remain intact. Optcis will be set in a fairing under the chin. Korean Air also markets the development under a low-cost approach to a comparable manned system of equal capabilities. Armament options will include rocket pods, gun pods and missiles which, when coupled to onboard systems, will provide a surgical strike capability with no potential pilot loss in enemy-held territory.




While the South Korean Air Force is not actively looking for a product like the KUS-VH, the possible reuse of the aging stock of MD500 helicopters might be tempting enough for the service to have a serious look. The MD500s currently in service will be retired over the next decade and number several hundred.

The Boeing participation in the program is key not only due to the company's position as a global defense powerhouse but also with its recent experience in developing its own H-6U "Little Bird" unmanned helicopter (detailed elsewhere on this site). The KUH-VH will be offered for export to American and South Korean allies.




MEDIA









Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

Image of collection of graph types

Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 200mph
Lo: 100mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (162mph).

    Graph average of 150 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
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  NYC
Graph showcases the KAI / Boeing KUS-VJ's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
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Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
1
1

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
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Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue
Supported Arsenal
Graphical image of an air-to-air missile weapon
Graphical image of a short-range air-to-air missile
Graphical image of an aircraft Gatling-style rotating gun
Graphical image of an aircraft anti-tank guided missile
Graphical image of an aircraft rocket pod
Commitments / Honors
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