<summary>K-1200 K-MAX Helicopter (CQ-24A)>
The CQ-24A is an American unmanned cargo helicopter that was trialed from 2011-2014 in Afghanistan. After it was determined their capabilities were no longer needed in Afghanistan, the Marine Corps elected to keep the helicopters in storage pending future requirements and for use in future cargo UAV testing programs. This time came in 2019 when Kaman was awarded a contract to reactivate the two stored CQ-24A's, specifically for use in the Advanced Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System program.
The K-1200 K-MAX is the manned variant of the helicopter the CQ-24A was developed from, it's used extensively in the civilian world for heavy cargo lift and firefighting operations (although in the past some have been contracted for cargo operations for the American navy on an ad-hoc basis). Five were also exported to Colombia in 2002 for use in counter-narcotics operations. The first production run helicopters entered service in 1991 and were produced until 2003. They continue to serve today and Kaman restarted production in 2015 due to an influx of orders (with the most recent order being placed on 1/20/21).
Both the CQ-24A and the civilian variants of the K-1200 share the same powerplant, top speed, lift weight, dimensions, and fuel stores. The powerplant in question is one Honeywell T53-17A-1, producing 1,800 horsepower and a top speed of 100 knots (80 knots when carrying cargo). Said powerplant consumes fuel at a rate of 4.215 kilograms per minute and the helicopters have a fuel capacity of 699 kilograms. They also have a maximum lift weight of 3,109 kg (2,722 kg if the cargo is sling loaded) and an empty weight of 2,334 kg. Their length is 18.85m, their width is 15.67m, and they have a height of 4.14m. Furthermore, the CQ-24A and the Colombian military variants should have the "Night-Navigation" trait, as the Columbian Military does have Night Vision pilot optics and the CQ-24A is an autonomous vehicle that can fly a preprogrammed route using its instrumentation rather than by observation.
Now for the differences between the K-1200 and the CQ-24A. The K-1200 has a crew of one, while the CQ-24A is unmanned (operating through a LOS or satellite datalink). As a result, the CQ-24A shouldn't have the "Mk1 Eyeballs" sensor. Information about the specific sensors on the CQ-24As deployed to Afghanistan is quite limited, however based what has been released and the exterior of the aircraft, there was the presence of an HD camera for landing guidance. By 2020 one of the aircraft had also been upgraded with a LIDAR sensor for fully autonomous landing. The CQ-24A also does not appear to have any DECM or countermeasure launchers, being manufactured with the intention of operating in the low threat environment of Afghanistan (although if you decide to also implement a hypothetical variant set in the future, countermeasures would most likely be added on).
The loadout for both aircraft would be:
#2259 Cargo [Air Drop, 3 Tons] with the name indicating it is a slung load.
CQ-24A arriving at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona, May 7, 2016.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KaEC-UVfcs0 CQ-24A in operation in Afghanistan
https://www.kaman.com/news/kaman-awarded-contract-reactivate-usmc-k-max-helicopters Manufacturer's website stating the Marine Corps issued them a contract to reactivate the two CQ-24A's in storage.
https://www.kaman.com/aerosystems/solutions/air-vehicles-mro/k-max Product page for the K-1200, with specifications and flight performance.
SIPRI Arms Transfer Database
https://www.dacis.com/budget/budget_pdf/FY19/RDTE/N/0304240M_100.pdf Unclassified budgetary report for the Advanced Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System program, of which the CQ-24As were reactivated for.
CQ-24A with the Near Earth autonomy sensor package equipped.
< Message edited by Tookatee -- 4/9/2021 1:26:27 PM >