Air-Launched Weapons

UK to replenish Hellfire stock

17 March 2017
Along with the Apache attack helicopter, the Reaper UAV (pictured) is one of two UK platforms that carries the Hellfire missile (seen here on the outer pylons). The UK is to acquire a further 1,000 missiles to replenish its inventory. Source: Crown Copyright

The UK is to replenish its stock of Lockheed Martin AGM-114 Hellfire II air-to-surface missiles at a cost of USD150 million.

According to the US Defense Security and Cooperation Agency (DSCA), which announced the State Department approval for the sale on 16 March, the UK has requested 1,000 AGM-114R1/R2 Hellfire II semi-active laser (SAL) missiles with logistics support services and other related programme support.

"This proposed sale directly contributes to the foreign policy and national security policies of the United States by enhancing the close air support capability of the UK in support of NATO and other coalition operations," the DSCA said. "Commonality between close air support capabilities greatly increases interoperability between our two countries' military and peacekeeping forces, and allows for greater burden sharing."

In UK service, the Hellfire (Heliborne, Laser, Fire and Forget) is carried by the AgustaWestland-Boeing WAH-64 Apache AH1 attack helicopter flown by the British Army Air Corps and the General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial vehicle flown by the Royal Air Force.

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