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Malaysia's MD 530G helos on order will undergo predelivery examination after years of delays


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According to Malaysia's defence minister, six light attack helicopters ordered by the government are nearing completion and acceptance.


In response to a question from MPs on Sept. 30, Hishammuddin Hussein stated that the six MD 530G helicopters will be subjected to another round of predelivery inspection in November at MD Helicopters' facility in Mesa, Arizona.


This follows a first series of inspections in June and July, which revealed that "important equipment and essential software" needed to be fixed before acceptance.
The minister did not go into detail about the nature of these difficulties, but he did say that if the helicopters pass the impending inspection, the long-awaited delivery might begin.

 

Malaysian aviation officials have also given the helicopters type approval, with Hishammuddin confirming that all six helicopters are built and ready to fly, and that Malaysian Army soldiers have previously received training on the aircraft type in the United States.


Between April and July, two groups of pilots were trained, and between May and August, two groups of ground crew got technical training on the aircraft.
MD Helicopters leased a range in western Texas for the flight training, and the MD 530Gs were registered in the United States.

 

In 2016, Malaysia placed an order for the MD 530Gs.
The first two were planned to arrive in July 2017, with the remaining four scheduled to arrive in December 2018.
However, delivery has been continually postponed due to "technical" and other concerns.


A delivery goal of the end of 2020 was set, however as Defense News reported last year, the schedule set by Malaysia's Army chief has also slipped.

 

A digital glass cockpit, a Tek Fusion mission management and weapons management system, ballistic armour protection, a crash-tolerant fuel system, a chin-mounted Wescam MX-10D electro-optical/infrared laser designation turret, and a Thales Scorpion helmet-mounted system to assist with a pilot's situational awareness are all included on the MD 530Gs.

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