MD Helicopters’ (MDHI) new MD 530G Scout attack helicopter has successfully completed live-fire qualification exercises at the Yuma Proving Grounds in Arizona, US.
The helicopter is configured with the Moog stores management system (SMS), the Mace Aviation extended range weapons wing and FN Herstal machine gun and rocket machine pods, as well as the M134D-H mini-gun, L-3 Wescam MX-10D and M260 rocket pod.
During the exercises, it fired .50 calibre and 7.62mm ammunition, as well as unguided and laser-guided rockets.
MDHI chief executive officer Lynn Tilton said: "The bold performance and target accuracy of the MD 530G aircraft during the Yuma firing exercise is a testament to the reliability of the combat-proven OH-6/530F airframe."
Raytheon Talon programme director Darryl Kreitman said: "This test further demonstrates the maturity of the Talon laser-guided rocket weapon system as a complement to MD’s scout attack platform.
"These test shots showcased Talon’s versatility over the entire firing envelope, with direct hits for all events."
Launched at HeliExpo in February, the MD 530G Scout is based on the combat-proven MD 530F airframe, and is expected to offer expanded armed aerial-mission capabilities to military customers in austere environments.
Designed for agile deployment with any rotary wing unit, the helicopter features an increased capacity landing gear to support 3,750 max gross takeoff weight (MGTOW), which enables the operator to utilise the increased useful load for additional range, endurance and weapons capabilities.
Tilton added: "The versatility of this aircraft for attack, scout and escort missions provides maximum combat utility at the lowest operating cost in the scout attack helicopter class.
"This aircraft is poised to become the preferred armed scout and light-attack helicopter solution for US and allied fleets around the globe."
The helicopter is scheduled to complete its certificate of conformance by September and will enter initial rate production later this year.
Image: The MD 530G Scout launched four Talon laser-guided rockets during a live-fire demonstration. Photo: © 2014 MD HELICOPTERS, INC.