|CH-47C Super Chinook|
|Armor||Front 0 / Side 0 / Rear 0 / Top 0|
|Fuel Capacity||2500 L|
|Type||Airborne, Mechanized, Armored, Motorized, Support|
The CH-47 Chinook is an American primary heavy transport helicopter. The Chinook was designed and initially produced by Boeing Vertol in the early 1960s. The helicopter is now produced by Boeing Rotorcraft Systems. Chinooks have been sold to 16 nations with the US Army and the Royal Air Force being the largest users. The CH-47 is among the heaviest lifting Western helicopters.
One of the three supply helicopters available to NATO forces, the CH-47C Super Chinook is slower than its French counterpart, the SA.330L Puma, for almost twice the price and for double the capacity, while carrying 1.3 times the supplies than the Chinook HC.1 for 1.2 times its cost, making it the most cost-effective of all NATO supply helicopters in terms of price/supply carried.
In late 1956, the United States Department of the Army announced plans to replace the CH-37 Mojave, which was powered by piston engines, with a new, turbine-powered helicopter. Turbine engines were also a key design feature of the smaller UH-1 "Huey" utility helicopter. Following a design competition, in September 1958, a joint Army-Air Force source selection board recommended that the Army procure the Vertol medium transport helicopter. However, funding for full-scale development was not then available, and the Army vacillated on its design requirements. Some in the Army aviation corps thought that the new helicopter should be a light tactical transport aimed at taking over the missions of the old piston-engined H-21 and H-34 helicopters, and consequently capable of carrying about fifteen troops. Another faction in the Army aviation corps thought that the new helicopter should be much larger to be able to airlift a large artillery piece, and have enough internal space to carry the new MGM-31 "Pershing" Missile System
Vertol began work on a new tandem-rotor helicopter designated Vertol Model 107 or V-107 in 1957. In June 1958, the US Army awarded a contract to Vertol for the aircraft under the YHC-1A designation.The YHC-1A had a capacity for 20 troops. Three were tested by the Army to derive engineering and operational data. However, the YHC-1A was considered by most of the Army users to be too heavy for the assault role and too light for the transport role. The decision was made to procure a heavier transport helicopter and at the same time upgrade the UH-1 "Huey" as a tactical troop transport. The YHC-1A would be improved and adopted by the Marines as the CH-46 Sea Knight in 1962. The Army then ordered the larger Model 114 under the designation HC-1B. The pre-production Boeing Vertol YCH-1B made its initial hovering flight on 21 September 1961. In 1962 the HC-1B was re-designated the CH-47Aunder the 1962 United States Tri-Service aircraft designation system.
The name "Chinook" alludes to the Chinook people of the Pacific Northwest. The CH-47 is powered by two turboshaft engines, mounted on each side of the helicopter's rear end and connected to the rotors by driveshafts. Initial models were fitted with engines of 2,200 horsepower. The counter-rotating rotors eliminate the need for an anti-torque vertical rotor, allowing all power to be used for lift and thrust. The ability to adjust lift in either rotor makes it less sensitive to changes in the center of gravity, important for the cargo lifting role. If one engine fails, the other can drive both rotors. The "sizing" of the Chinook was directly related to the growth of the Huey and the Army's tacticians' insistence that initial air assaults be built around the squad. The Army pushed for both the Huey and the Chinook, and this focus was responsible for the acceleration of its air mobility effort.
Improved and later versionsEdit
Pinnacle maneuver whereby soldiers are deposited without the helicopter landing. Improved and more powerful versions of the CH-47 have been developed since the helicopter entered service. The US Army's first major design leap was the now-common CH-47D, which entered service in 1982. Improvements from the CH-47C included upgraded engines, composite rotor blades, a redesigned cockpit to reduce pilot workload, improved and redundant electrical systems, an advanced flight control system and improved avionics. The latest mainstream generation is the CH-47F, which features several major upgrades to reduce maintenance, digitized flight controls, and is powered by two 4,733-horsepower Honeywell engines.