Italy plans to upgrade its first 45 A129 Mangusta combat helicopters to the multi-role standard of the last 15 aircraft in the 60-aircraft force. Upgrades include:
@ a new five-blade rotor for improved maneuverability.
@ a new transmission able to deliver 30% more torque.
@ a strengthened fuselage and new landing gear to allow a 15% increase in takeoff weight.
@ a new 20mm TM197B nose cannon.
@ two rails for Stinger air-to-air missiles.
@ the ability to handle unbalanced weapons loads and drop tanks for extra fuel.
@ a new forward-looking infrared night vision system to allow better operating at night and in bad weather.
@ a GPS receiver added to the navigation system to provide more accuracy.
@ a third radio specifically for talking to ground units.
@ reduced radar cross section to make it harder to target the Mangusta.
@ upgraded laser-warning receiver and upgraded radar-warning receiver.
@ a new chaff and flare dispensor able to deal with more dangerous ground-to-air missiles.
@ the new AAR-60 missile launch detection system.--Stephen V Cole