The Combat Utility Helicopter: What Will Meet Marine Corps Needs Into
The 21st Century?
SUBJECT AREA - Aviation
Title: The Combat Utility Helicopter:
What Will Meet Marine Corps Needs Into the 21st Century?
Author: Major Kenneth G. Inhoff, United States Marine Corps
Thesis: The Marine Corps should upgrade its combat utility helicopter with the 4BN
system--the UH-1 version of the proposed AH-1W four-blade system upgrade--to achieve
component commonality and give it the capability to meet "over the horizon" and
"high-altitude/hot-day" future mission demands.
Background: There is little doubt that the Marine Corps' combat utility helicopter needs
replacement or improvements to increase its maintainability and meet mission demands.
However, controversy still exists over how this should be done.
Ongoing communication, navigation, and survivability improvements to the UH-1N will
provide the Corps with a technologically advanced system capable of meeting night, all-weather,
and "high-tech" battlefield requirements into the future. These improvements meet the
warfighting modernization efforts described by Marine Corps Commandant, General Al Gray, in
his "Annual Report of the Marine Corps to Congress" in 1991.
Yet, the added weight of survivability and mission equipment coupled with the aging
airframe and drivetrain are straining maintainability, and put the UH-1N at mission performance
risk. Several alternatives exist to solve these problems. Buying new CH-6OMMs would provide
the Marine Corps with a capable utility helicopter, but its excessive cost and size, and its
maintenance intensiveness offset its benefits. Replacing the UH-1N with a new Bell Model 412
would provide no additional performance capability, and at a higher cost, than the UH-1N 412
Mid-Life Upgrade-the current proposed option. The "off-the-shelf" 412 Mid-Life Upgrade is
the lowest cost alternative that will improve maintainability and restore the UH-1N's lost
performance, but it does so with old technology that achieves no component
commonality--critical to improved maintainability, reduced maintenance and aircrew workload,
and lessening the strain on the aircraft supply system--and will not meet expected mission
The 4BN is the only option that achieves maximum component commonality, and meets
"over the horizon" and "high-altitude/hot-day" mission demands expected on the future
battlefield. Although it costs more than the 412 MLU, investment in the 4BN provides
substantial savings over sustainment of the current UH-1N. Additionally, cost and operational
effectiveness analysis calculations show distinct benefits for the 4BN, while disregarding others
that mislead budget planners in the cost-versus-demands dilemma.
Recommendation: The Marine Corps should fund the 4BN upgrade to the UH-1N. It is the
only alternative that will achieve the greatest degree of component commonality, and will meet
"over the horizon" and "high-altititude/hot-day" mission demands expected on the future
THE COMBAT UTILITY HELICOPTER: WHAT WILL MEET MARINE
CORPS NEEDS INTO THE 21ST CENTURY?
"Twenty-two years of mission system growth has resulted in almost 1000 pounds of
lost payload. Operations at maximum gross weight with little-to-no...power margins
have been commonplace. Improved performance is critical to meeting required mission
profiles for safe/successful completion of current and future missions."1
The preceding observation is reiterated in similar debates regarding a necessity for
improving the Marine Corps' combat utility helicopter capability. There is little doubt
that the UH-1N needs replacement or improvements to increase its maintainability and
meet mission demands. However, controversy still exists over how this should be done.
It will be 25 years before a replacement utility aircraft is fielded. Until that time, the
utility mission must be filled with a cost and mission effective aircraft.
This paper will highlight ongoing communication, navigation, and survivability
improvements to the UH-1N that will provide the Corps with a technologically advanced
system capable of meeting night, all-weather, and "high-tech" battlefield requirements
into the future. It also will look at several controversial utility helicopter new-purchase
and upgrade alternatives that attempt to improve maintainability, and meet "over the
horizon" and "high-altitude/hot-day" mission demands. The conclusion will offer a
solution to the debate on what will meet Marine Corps needs for an effective combat
utility helicopter into the 21st century?
The UH-1N is a 1960's design that has not been significantly improved since its fleet
introduction in 1971. Production of the UH-1N ended in 1976. Several significant
structural and dynamic component deficiencies limit its service life, increase its
operating and maintenance costs, and reduce its mission performance. Additionally, at
current usage, the majority of the UH-1Ns will reach their service life limit by the year
Recent funded upgrades, many currently in operational test phases, will
technologically advance the communication and navigation capabilities, and survivability
of the UH-1N. These upgrades will push the Huey into current decade technology. But
the added weight of survivability and mission equipment coupled with the aging airframe
and drivetrain are straining maintainability, and put the UH-1N at mission performance
A service life extension from 10,000 hours to 17,500 hours would extend UH-1N
airframe life until replacement, but would do nothing to increase its maintainability, nor
speed, range, and payload performance.
Various solutions to these problems have resulted in controversy over what will meet
Marine Corps demands. The most viable are buying a new CH-6OMM Blackhawk or the
commercial Bell Model 412 (with modifications); or using the current UH-1N with
proposed AH-1W engines, drivetrain, and four-blade rotor. The proposal for a Bell
Helicopter Model 412 "variant" of the UH-1N, the currently funded 412 Mid-Life
Upgrade (MLU), also has gained support over other viable options. Which of these
alternatives will meet future demands?
CURRENT UH-1N TECHNOLOGY UPGRADES
General A. M. Gray's "Annual Report of the Marine Corps to Congress" for 1991
outlines the Corps's direction in technological advancement. His intent has a direct
influence on today's aircraft improvements.
Our priorities in research and development, and acquisition programs are based on
the procurement of systems necessary for projecting forces from the sea, onto the land,
to...navigate and communicate at night in adverse weather conditions. We are also
upgrading our command, control, and communications...systems to enhance our ability
to exchange secure, near real-time tactical information.
Recent funded upgrades will provide the UH-1N some capability to meet the warfighting
modernization effort described by General Gray four years ago.
For example, a new communications suite with three multiband ARC-210 radios will
provide UH-1N pilots and an airborne ground commander with access to VHF and UHF
frequencies in AM and FM modes, including satellite communication (SATCOM). The
ARC-210 is equipped with "Havequick" and Single Channel Ground and Air Radio
System (SINCGARS) jam resistant modes, and is KY-58 secure voice capable.
A Marine Corps Gazette article on maneuver warfare summed up the need for such a
The MAGTF commander's area of influence is several hundred miles beyond the
forward edge of the battle area...[and] the Air Combat Element's power must communicate
with the Ground Combat and Combat Service Support Elements in order to synthesize
their individual combat power.4
Battle Assessment Team Aviation reports from Southwest Asia also identified the
ineffective tactical communication, unreliable high frequency radios, and the large
theater of operation as being nearly "communication show stoppers."5 The recommended
top priority was SINCGARS.
This communication suite provides the UH-1N with an internal, state-of-the-art,
airborne command and control mission capability. It provides for transmitting jam
resistant secure voice information to air, ground, and shipboard forces beyond the range
of current line-of-sight radios.
The Fleet Operational Needs Statement (FONS) for an ASC-26 Airborne Command
and Control Package also identifies that the "increased demands of the tactical
commander to effectively communicate with widely dispersed, highly mobile forces,
operating beyond line-of-site is paramount to successful mission accomplishment."6
Development of this UH-1N compatible radio package will provide a greater capability
in command and control, and radio relay.
Experience gathered from recent operations likewise affirms Marine Corps needs for
a night and all-weather navigation capability in its combat helicopters. Southwest Asia
Battle Assessment Team Aviation studies document Marine Aircraft Groups -16, -26, and
-50 command elements universal in their recommendation that all helicopters be
retrofitted with a global positioning system.
The need for a reliable navigation system in featureless terrain is crucial for successful
employment of modern aircraft. The global positioning system (GPS) provides rotary wing
aircraft with a basic capability.7
Lieutenant General Pitman's "Aviation Posture Statement" for fiscal year 1991
additionally highlights that "successful mission execution depends heavily on..effective
use of environmental factors such as darkness and weather to our advantage."8
Funded UH-1N upgrades provide these advanced capabilities, now necessary on the
modern battlefield. The UH-1N is scheduled to receive the miniaturized airborne global
positioning system receiver (MAGR) and the APN-217(V)6 VECP Doppler radar
providing a navigation capability not tied to inaccurate ground-based transmitters.
To complement the navigation system with a night vision and marginal weather
capability, an AN/AAQ-22A Navigational Thermal Imaging System provides high
resolution forward looking infrared radar (FLIR) imagery.
UH-1 pilots will also use the AN/AVS-7 night vision goggle monocle head up display
(HUD), adding an additional margin of safety to the night fighting capability. In
conjunction with the navigation system, the HUD provides position, airspeed, heading,
altitude, and bearing and distance to a selected waypoint without necessity for
pilot-monitoring inside the cockpit.
To further enhance navigation and night fighting capabilities, a FLIR laser range
finder allows for target identification with precise location information derived through
the positioning system and onboard computer. This system increases the accuracy of the
UH-1N in its supporting arms control platform role. Projected installation of a laser
designator will provide the capability to designate those targets during attack.
Additionally, three multi-function, color displays will provide the pilot, copilot, and
airborne ground commander with selections of aircraft flight instruments, moving map,
FLIR imagery, and various tactical mission task and information presentations. These
displays will greatly reduce the high aircrew workload, especially in the multi-mission
night fighting combat utility role, and provide the airborne commander a new look at the
Another warfighting modernization effort is a UH-1N upgrade for aircraft and crew
protection from enemy missile threat. An integrated electronic warfare suite will
encompass the AAR-47 Missile Warning System and APR-39A(V)2 Radar Signal
Detecting Set for detection and identification of search, acquisition, and missile track
radars; and the AVR-2 Laser Detecting Set. The suite also passively detects homing
missiles, and it automatically dispenses countermeasures against detected threats.
Together, the night and all-weather capability, and increased survivability for the
utility helicopter are progressing in accordance with General Gray's advanced technology
visions, required to operate effectively on the modern battlefield.
Yet, despite the extensive and ongoing technological upgrades for the UH-1N,
controversy remains over how to improve the utility helicopter's maintainability, "over
the horizon" capability, and "high-altitude/hot-day" performance, until its replacement is
fielded. Increased flight demands, increased weight from numerous airframe changes
and equipment additions, and its aging engine and drivetrain, combine to strain UH-1N
maintainability and jeopardize mission performance.
A report from OPERATION PROVIDE COMFORT indicated that at 38 degrees and
an operating altitude of 2000 feet, the UH-1N was ineffective for any mission that
required lifting a payload or ordnance and was limited to a basic load and crew.9 This
constraint, demonstrated in a "real world" mission, is indicative of the problems the
Marine Corps' combat utility helicopter faces.
ANALYZING THE ALTERNATIVES
The current proposed solution to these problems is the UH-1N 412 Mid-Life Upgrade
(MLU) scheduled for fiscal year 1997 funding. The 412 MLU incorporates a four-blade
rotor system, increased internal fuel capacity, and uprated transmission and tail drive
system from the existing commercial Bell Helicopter Model 412. These, in conjunction
with an uprated engine package will improve UH-1N maintainability and restore its lost
Additionally, the Bell Model 412 is operating throughout the world with proven
success. This assurance, in conjunction with limited modifications required to install the
412 MLU in the UH-1N aiframe, make it a relatively risk-free choice.
Buying an off-the-shelf upgrade for the UH-1N also meets current non-developmental
acquisition desires. Off-the-shelf buys greatly reduce costs for research and development
and can still meet stringent military standards, resulting in a lowest cost alternative.
However, despite the benefits offered by a 412 MLU over current UH-1N shortfalls,
other new-purchase and upgrade options being considered offer some important benefits.
One of the new-purchase arguments that continues to rise in professional discussions,
is replacing the UH-1N with a new procurement CH-60MM The U.S. Army replaced its
combat utility Huey fleet with the UH-60 Blackhawk and the Navy already uses the
Seahawk variation of the H-60.
Preliminary Cost and Operational Effectiveness Analysis estimates show some
"high-altitude/hot-day" range and payload advantage with the CH-60MM over the UH-1N
The CH-6OMM also provides significant benefits in survivability compared to other
alternatives. The Blackhawk is nearly ballistic invulnerable up to l2.7mm and much
more survivable against the 23mm.11 The H-60 is also more crashworthy than the H-1.
Additional effectiveness would be attained through some commonality of
components. A similar Army and Navy helicopter supply system and similar
maintenance procedures throughout the Department of Defense would reduce parts
redundancy and increase the "pool" of trained mechanics. Although hard to quantify,
such concepts become especially beneficial in joint operations.
The obvious drawback of a new procurement CH-60MM is its cost. Initial funding for
outfitting light/attack squadrons is too much to absorb in the short time associated with
fleet introduction requirements. Additionally, at a 43 percent higher life cycle cost, the
CH-60MM option is not a high contender.12 Since wartime attrition costs are not figured
into the totals, and any wartime losses would account for high figure replacement, the
option is less acceptable. Total cost for replacement with the CH-60MM is over three
times the cost of the UH-1N 412 MLU.
A minor additional drawback is the development and operational testing involved
with introduction of a "highbred" H-60. Simply put, the Marine Corps version of the
H-60 would be a mix of the Army and Navy variants, with shipboard compatibility
characteristics of the Navy aircraft, and cabin configuration similar to the Army's.
A less evident objection to replacing the UH-1N with the CH-60MM is the increased
size. With amphibious assault shipping and air transport at critical limits, a significantly
larger utility helicopter would prove harder to deploy, employ, and sustain in combat
Deck spotting for stowage, launch/recovery, and refuel is already limited, especially on
smaller deck ships called on to carry task organized contingents. Such was the case for
the USS Trenton in 1988, charged with sustaining a task-organized helicopter squadron
for ship escort operations. Likewise, UH-1Ns occupy less of the critical space aboard
C-5, C-141, or C-17 transports, than CH-60MMs, should the need arise to airlift utility
mission helicopters as part of an Air Contingency Force.
Given the argument that one CH-60MM can carry as much as two UH-1Ns, it would
appear that less overall airlift and deck spotting would be needed to deploy the required
H-60s. But this reasoning disregards the fact that rarely is a lone aircraft flown into
combat. Realistically, the same number of H-1 and H-60 helicopters would be needed to
perform any assigned utility mission. Additionally, a section of H-1 helicopters certainly
will perform required missions at less cost per flight hour than a section of CH-60MMs.
Finally, the CH-60MM is more maintenance intensive than the UH-1N. Any
additional personnel requirement violates a Mission Need Statement constraint.13 More
maintenance hours equals more aircraft down time, or increased squadron manning level,
neither of which is acceptable with expected deployment tempo and personnel
Another new-purchase, although less viable, option is replacement of the current
UH-1N (Bell Model 212) with the slightly newer technology, four-blade Bell Model 412.
In fact, the UH-1N 412 MLU would receive key components from the 412.
The obvious drawback here is the illogical purchase of a completely new aircraft
when an existing airframe can be upgraded to like-performance at less cost.
Besides purchase cost, a new airframe must meet higher survivability demands, in
ballistic tolerance and crashworthiness, than does an existing aircraft upgrade. The
additional price for such requirements, including research and development costs, make a
new Bell Model 412 purchase option less logical.
Another option, offering a tradeoff to the 412 MLU and gaining attention, is
upgrading the UH-1N with the proposed AH-1W 4BW system--called the 4BN. This
option offers two critical benefits at reasonable cost that other alternatives do not. First,
the 4BN achieves substantial increase in component commonality with the AH-1--its
sister aircraft in the Marine light attack helicopter squadron. Second, the 4BN meets
mission performance demands for expected "over the horizon," and
"high-altitude/hot-day" operations of the Corps' combat assault support helicopters.
A closer analysis of these critical benefits makes the argument against the UH-1N 412
MLU more evident.
An increased degree of AH-1 and UH-1 aircraft component commonality has been
pursued by Marine light attack helicopter squadron commanders and acquisition planners
since the compositing of the attack and utility squadrons in 1982/83. In fact, the Marine
Corps Master Plan calls for reduction of different type, model, and series aircraft in the
Marine Corps' inventory to more capable multi-mission aircraft. Anticipated
replacement of the AH-1W, UH-1N, and retired OV-10, with a single type "vertical
takeoff and landing attack/observation" (VMAO) aircraft, shows an effort toward this
goal. Likewise, AH-1 and UH-1 avionics will achieve 68 percent commonality with
In the interim, the forecasted 4BW upgrade of the AH-1W offers the Marine Corps an
opportunity to install common rotor, engines, transmission, and tail drivetrain in the
AH-1 and UH-1 helicopters. Even cursory analysis reveals the logic of having similar
parts and maintenance procedures for attack and utility versions of the H-1.
Current commonality shortfalls mean H-1 mechanics and crewchiefs undergo
additional training to become qualified on two similarly designed but very different
squadron airframes. Amidst the increased tempo of training and deployment, they are
required to learn and maintain repair-proficiency on two helicopters--the AH-1 and UH-1
models--virtually doubling their workload.
A pilot who crosstrains in the AH-1 and UH-1 meets a similar challenge. Common
rotor, engines, transmission, and tail drivetrain offered by the 4BN, besides the current
avionics commonality, would significantly decrease basic flight training. More time
would be devoted to mission training in two already demanding syllabi. A look at H-1
missions, and at Training and Readiness Manual, and Marine Corps Combat Readiness
and Evaluation System requirements, reveals a heavy pilot workload.
And, of course, the Navy aircraft supply system suffers with every new component
introduced. A common 4BW and 4BN upgrade would drastically reduce the number and
type of components to stock and deploy.
Despite the obvious benefits, commonality is overlooked in cost and operational
effectiveness calculations because it cannot be expressed in dollars. Such disregard
misleads budget planners in the cost-versus-needs dilemma.
Meeting future mission performance is the second critical benefit the 4BN achieves at
reasonable cost. There is no doubt that we live under increasing budget constraints.
However, cost alone does not drive Marine Corps requirements. U.S. 1994 National
Strategy, which calls for "robust and flexible military forces...capable of responding
quickly and operating effectively," assumes the Marine Corps will meet the highest
expected mission demands.
In the utility helicopter's three primary roles of command and control, troop transport,
and airborne control of supporting arms, the 4BN significantly outperforms the proposed
UH-1N 412 MLU at high altitudes on hot days. In fact, only the 4BN meets 100 percent
of the operational performance requirements in the Huey's primary command and control
role in "high-altitude/hot-day" conditions.14 When installation of forecasted offensive
and defensive weapon system upgrades begins, the increased weight will make this
operating margin more critical.
Some statistics may be helpful in comparing the proposed UH-1N 412 MLU and the
4BN. On a 95 degree day, at 4000 feet, with full fuel load, the 4BN's payload is
estimated at 3,230 pounds compared to 1,214 pounds for the 412 MLU. This means the
412 MLU can carry only five combat-equipped troops, vice 13 in the 4BN. If a
command-and-control radio package was installed, the helicopterborne commander
would be limited to only three additional passengers, and no defensive armament could
be carried because of weight restrictions.
The argument that Marines rarely will be called on to fight in "high-altitude/hot-day"
conditions, fails to account for those times they might. Such ambient conditions are
encountered every year, in training alone, at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat
Center. The Corps cannot give up this utility helicopter performance capability for the
next 25 years in hopes that Marines will not be required to fight in such conditions. Lack
of performance demonstrated in OPERATION PROVIDE COMFORT should not be
Airspeed comparision is another example where the 4BN outperforms the 412 MLU.
Given the same ambient conditions (95 degree day at 4000 feet), the 4BN's estimated
maximum airspeed is 162 knots compared to 124 knots for the 412 MLU.15 Without the
4BN upgrade, the UH-1N will not be mission compatible with the Marine Corps' other
assault support helicopers (AH-1W and CH-53E) as each strives to increase speed, range,
and payload capabilities associated with "over the horizon" mission demands.
At this point, two arguments against the 4BN should be reviewed. First, this
alternative will cost more. The 4BN is $.66 billion (life-cycle-cost for 20 years) more
than the UH-1N 412 MLU. A significant portion of the cost is the research,
development, test, and evaluation of a new system.
Yet, investment in technology that achieves higher standards now, will save money
upgrading the UH-1N 412 MLU in the future, when it fails to meet mission demands.
Additionally, although more expensive than the 412 MLU, the 4BN is $.7 billion cheaper
than sustainment of the current UH-1N. The 4BN also meets mission demands at
significantly less cost than the CH-60MM-its closest performance competitor. Lastly,
common maintenance and flight training, and parts commonality, result in benefits not
included in calculations. The cost for the increased performance offered by the 4BN is
one the Marine Corps will deal with eventually.
The second argument, is that 4BN technology is not fully developed. Work continues
on rotor-to-transmission matching, and on a 4-blade fold system that meets shipboard
compatibility requirements. Yet, despite required development time, projected
production of the 4BN would match the 412 MLU by FY-01. Since the Mission Need
Statement requires full operational capability by FY-05, the 4BN still meets constraints.16
After analysis, it is obvious that an option to replace the UH-1N with new CH-60MMs
would certainly provide the Marine Corps with a capable utility helicopter. Yet, the
CH-60MM's excessive cost, size, and maintenance intensiveness are liabilities that offset
its benefits. Another new-purchase alternative, replacing the UH-1N with the Bell Model
412, would provide no additional performance capability, and at a higher cost, than the
UH-1N 412 MLU option.
As the only "off-the-shelf" upgrade of the UH-1N, the 412 MLU is the lowest cost
alternative that will improve maintainability and restore the UH-1N's lost performance.
However, it will do so with old technology that achieves no AH-1/UH-1 component
commonality, and will merely restore perfomance, not meet future mission demands.
The newest technology upgrade, the 4BN, will reduce maintenance and aircrew
workload and improve maintainability through component commonality. It will not only
restore lost performance, but will provide a significant increase in capability making the
utility helicopter compatible with other Marine Corps assault support helicopters on the
future battlefield. And the 4BN will meet the expected performance demands at a
significant cost savings over sustainment of the current UH-1N, including benefits not
calculated in the cost and operational effectiveness analysis.
The Marine Corps invested wisely in currently funded communication, navigation,
and survivability upgrades to the UH-1N. They will place the Huey in the forefront of
technological improvements necessary on the "high-tech" battlefield.
The Marine Corps must now ensure its combat utility helicopter achieves maximum
component commonality, and meets "over the horizon" and "high-altitude/hot-day"
mission demands, expected on the modern battlefield, until its replacement is fielded.
The solution for an effective combat utility helicopter into the 21st century is the 4BN.
1 Commanding General, 2d Marine Aircraft Wing message to Commandant of the
Marine Corp (Aviation), subject: "Report of HMLA Commander's Symposium, 24-26
May 94," 081355Z August 1994.
2 CAPT S. L. Fahrenkrog, USN, "Marine Corps Light/Attack Helicopter Upgrades
Inforation Brief(Draft)," 5 December 1994.
3 Commanding General, Marine Corps Combat Development Command (C 06)
letter to Chief of Naval Operations (N8), subject: "USMC Mission Need Statement for an
Improved Assault Support, Combat Utility Capability," 3900 C 441, 27 April 1993.
4 Maj. Gordon C. O'Neil, USMC, and Maj. Daniel A. Driscoll, USMC, "Maneuver
Warfare: Can the ACE Adopt This Philosophy of War?" Marine Corps Gazette, May
5 Maj. M. A. Roberts, USMC, "Battle Assessment Team, Southwest Asia Aviation
Study," 15 June 1991. Battle Assessment Team information was gathered through
interviews with on-scene commanders, pilots, and flight leaders.
6 Commander, Marine Forces Atlantic message to Commandant of the Marine
Corps (APW-41), subject: "Fleet Operational Needs Statement (FONS) for the ASC-26
Helicopter Command and Control Communications (HC4) Upgrade/Replacement,"
241815Z June 1994.
7 Maj. M. A. Roberts, USMC, "Battle Assessment Team, Southwest Asia Aviation
Study," 15 June 1991.
8 LtGen. C. H. Pitman, USMC, "Aviation Posture Statement," Marine Corps
Gazette, May 1990, 53.
9 Commanding General, 2d Marine Aircraft Wing message to Commander, Marine
Forces Atlantic (G-3), subject: "UH-1N Mid-Life Upgrade (MLU)," 201511Z May 1993.
10 Naval Air Warfare Center, Aircraft Division, "UH-1N Mid-Life Upgrade Cost and
Operational Effectiveness Analysis (Draft), 25 May 1994.
12 Ibid., 22 June 94 insert. This figure is based on a 20 year life cycle.
13 Commanding General, Marine Corps Combat Development Command (C 06)
letter to Chief of Naval Operations (N8), subject: "USMC Mission Need Statement for an
Improved Assault Support, Combat Utility Capability," 3900 C 441, 27 April 1993.
14 CAPT S. L. Fahrenkrog, USN, "Marine Corps Light/Attack Helicopter Upgrades
Inforation Brief(Draft)," 5 December 1994. The graph showing the comparison of the
4BN versus the 412 Varient are based on Naval Air Warfare Center, Aircraft Division,
Cost and Operational Effectiveness Analysis of June 1994.
16 Commanding General, Marine Corps Combat Development Command (C 06)
letter to Chief of Naval Operations (N8), subject "USMC Mission Need Statement for an
Improved Assault Support, Combat Utility Capability," 3900 C 441, 27 April 1993.
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