The AH-1Z Viper's capabilities are impressive!
The U.S. Military has some of the most sophisticated and heavily-armed aircraft on the face of the planet. When it comes to air support for ground troops, no one does it better than the U.S.A. If you need further proof of that, just look at the United States Marine Corps' AH-1Z Viper attack helicopter.
This impressive piece of machinery has been in service for almost 20 years now. The two-man crew has access to numerous weapons that they can use to get Marines on the ground out of a jam.
To fully appreciate the capabilities of this helicopter, you must see it in action. This video of a training run at California's Chocolate Mountain Aerial Gunnery Range shows just how much damage this helicopter can dish out to enemy positions!
The AH-1Z Viper was developed from another Bell Helicopter, the AH-1 Super Cobra, an equally intimidating machine that can be seen in this video. This helicopter is an indirect descendant of the now iconic Bell Huey that so many of our servicemen and women know and love from their time proudly serving our nation.
The Viper's main gun, which you saw on display here in the nose of the aircraft, is a hard-hitting M197 20mm rotary cannon that fires those massive rounds at a blistering 3,300 feet per second. That firearm alone is enough to put a real hurt on hostile ground forces, but it is not the only venom this viper dishes out.
This helicopter is also often fitted with Sidewinder missiles for air-to-air combat or Hellfire air-to-surface missiles for engaging larger ground targets. The Viper is also sometimes fitted with APKWS II or Hydra 70 rockets tool. One thing is for sure, with all that firepower, Marines are probably glad to see it every time this aircraft shows up and pulls them out of a jam. We are glad it is on our side!