The Boeing CH-47 Chinook is an American Twin-engine, heavy-lift helicopter developed by American rotorcraft company Vertol. Boeing manufactured Chinook Helicopter. Boeing Defence, Space, and Security produced it in 1962 for the United States. It has proven its worth to the United States in so many years.
Versions of Chinook Helicopter
- HC-1B: It was the very first variant of the Chinook helicopter, which was designed in 1962, later named as CH-47 Chinook.
- CH-47A: It is an all-weather, medium-lift variant that U.S. Army got in August 1962.
- ACH-47A: Though the official designation of this helicopter is ACH-47A, but it is referred to as Guns A Go-Go by U.S. Army. It performs mainly attack and cargo lifting operations.
- CH-47C: The CH-47C features high powerful engines and transmissions. Boeing manufactured around 233 CH-47Cs.
- MH-47D: Special Forces need this variant in major operations as it has inflight refueling capability, a fast rope-rappelling system, and other upgrades.
- CH-47F: In 2001, the first CH-47F, an upgraded CH-47D, made its first flight. Indian Air Force operates on this variant.
Indian Air Force Gets The Boeing CH-47 Chinook Helicopter
U.S. aerospace giant, Boeing completed the delivery of the final five of the 15 Chinook heavy-lift helicopters just before the countrywide lockdown. Boeing completed the delivery at the Air Force Station, Chandigarh, in the month of March, this year. In September 2015, the United States government and India’s government signed a deal for the procurement of 22 Boeing AH-64E Apache attack Helicopters and 15 Chinook heavy-lift machines. The deal was finalized for $3 billion in which the contract for the Chinook helicopters was for $1.1 billion. The deal included follow-on orders for 11 more Apaches and 7 Chinooks.
Also Read, Indian Air Force – A Cut Above
Facts about CH-47F (I)
- CH-47F is an advanced version of the Chinook helicopter. It provides Indian Air Force the capability to conduct rescue operations in any difficult area. This helicopter strengthens the transport facility of the Indian Air Force. Chinook gives IAF an edge in combat missions as it can carry larger numbers of troops. This giant machine will be beneficial for conducting large scale rescue operations.
- Chinook is a highly advanced machine with the latest avionic systems. It has a fully integrated glass cockpit for mission management along with digital onboard systems for the safety of crewmembers and conduction of missions smoothly. This Helicopter contains very advanced transporting systems to reduce the workload of personnel. It helps in multitasking also as the members can focus on other tasks more efficiently.
- More than 19 countries all over the world operate Chinook helicopter. This fact is enough to prove that it is one of the best machines for transport and rescue operations.
Importance Of Boeing CH-47 Chinook For India
Boeing CH-47 Chinook comes with the capability of carrying 10 tones of payload. This is very beneficial for the Indian Air Force to carry out missions without concern for the weapons and other equipment. The missions can be performed more effectively as it allows carrying more troops. Chinook is very good when it comes to high altitude because the latest avionic systems have been installed on this helicopter. It has two rotors to keep this giant in the air with ease. The best part of this machine is that it solves the problem of the Indian Air Force of having a shortage of heavy-lift helicopters. Before these arrived, IAF had to depend only on Russian made MI-26 helicopter.
The design of this kind of machine has to go through rigorous testing by Russia or other West countries before induction in the Indian Air Force. IAF requires this helicopter for operating in high altitudes like 20,000 ft. but other countries generally operate at 5,000 to 10,000 ft. That is the reason the Indian Air Force has ordered these machines according to the conditions of our country. Flying at high altitude affects the overall performance of the engine and other parts because the air is less dense and these conditions consume fuel in a higher amount. Cold climate lowers the overall technical life of the machines and therefore these massive flying machines need more maintenance in these regions.
The Indian Army is also looking for obtaining these machines for transportation and deployment of its recently procured M-777 Ultra-Light howitzer artillery guns. In addition to all these, these helicopters have already proven their worth, as they have been extremely useful for the construction of infrastructure and border road projects in the North-East.