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Lynx AH.7 Helicopter

The Lynx AH.7 attack/utility helicopter is operated by the Army Air Corps (AAC), including 657 Squadron AAC of the Joint Special Forces Aviation Wing (JSFAW).

Lynx AH.7s are fitted with a suite of defensive countermeasures consisting of:

  • AN/ALQ-144 Infrared Jammer
  • BAE AWARE-3 ARI 23491 radar warning receiver
  • Sky Guardian mk15 electronic warfare system
  • M130 chaff/flare dispenser.

Other avionics include :

  • AN/ARN-118 Tactical Air Navigation system (TACAN)
  • BAE Systems mk 34 automatic flight control system
  • BAE Systems automatic stabilizer
  • Racal Doppler 91
  • ‘Elmer’ secure speech radio
  • Mode ‘C’ identification friend or foe system

Note: the AH7s flown by 657 AAC are likely to feature some non-standard bits of kit - both countermeasures and communications - exact details of which are not in the public domain.

In the attack configuration, the Lynx AH.7 is armed with 8 FITOW (further Improved TOW) wire-guided missiles on 2x4-tube racks on hardpoints attached to the fuselage. The FITOW is a wire-guided anti-tank missile with a dual warhead and a top-down attack capability. The Raytheon TOW sight can also be used for reconnaissance operations.

When configured for the utlity role, the Lynx AH.7 can carry up to 9 troops. In conventional warfare scenarious, the Lynx is often used to transport small anti-tank missile teams around the battlefield. A GPMG door gun is often mounted in one of the helicopter's cabin doors. 2 can be fitted, although doing so leaves little room for carrying stores or troops. 657 Sqn AAC Lynx helicopters are typically armed with 7.62mm Miniguns.

The Lynx AH.7 can carry 1350kg of underslung external stores.

2 Lynx helicopters can be transported in the hold of 1 C-130 Hercules. In the build up to Operation Barras, in which 657 AAC participated, 2 of their Lynx AH7 helicopters were airlifted into Sierra Leone by a RAF Hercules.

Lynx AH.7 Specifications

Crew 3 (pilot, co-pilot & door gunner)
Cargo capacity 9 troops
Maximum speed 160 knots
Range 280 nm
Max takeoff weight 4875 kg
Armament 1x 7.62mm GPMG
or 1x 7.62mm Minigun
or 8x TOW anti-tank missiles

lynx ah.7 helicopter
Royal Marines Commandos prepare to abseil down from a Lynx of the Commando Helicopter Force (note: the CHF has upgraded its fleet of Lynx helicopters to the Mk9a variant)
photo credit : US DoD

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