Here’s how flechette rockets are loaded into U.S. Army Kiowa Warriors helicopters

Arming the U.S. Army OH-58 Kiowa

Taken on Feb. 8, 2016 the following interesting pictures show soldiers assigned to the 1st Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment, 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade (CAB) preparing and then loading flechette rockets into OH-58 Kiowa Warrior helicopters during their aerial gunnery exercise, at Marine Corps Outlying Field Atlantic, N.C. .

Rockets multiple layers

The rockets come in multiple layers of packaging for preventing damage while in transit as well as avoiding misfires while attached to the unit’s OH-58s.

Ready tube

After having been unpacked they are placed in the so-called “ready tube,” where the rockets are located once they are ready to be loaded into the helicopters.

Rockets loading

Aerial gunnery exercises, during which the pilots fire at targets with rockets and machine guns both day and night, are aimed to maintain aircrews’ proficiency in the helicopter’s assigned weapons so that they can provide the best aviation support possible.


Image credit: Staff Sgt. Christopher Freeman /U.S. Army