Boeing delivered the first CH-47F Chinook helicopter upgraded to Block II to the U.S. Army.

Gastón Dubois

CH-47F Chinook Block II

Boeing delivered the first CH-47F Block II Chinook to the U.S. Army. It is the first of 465 helicopters in the Army’s Chinook fleet to be upgraded to the new Block II configuration.

“The CH-47F Block II provides capability improvements allowing the U.S. Army to lift more, fly farther and maintain their aircraft better than ever before,” said Heather McBryan, vice president and program manager, Cargo Programs. “This modernization program enables the battle-tested Chinook to play a key role in multi-domain operations going forward.”

With an improved drivetrain, a reinforced airframe and enhanced fuel system, the CH-47F Block II provides for an additional 4,000 pounds of max gross weight and extends the mission radius for nearly all payloads. In addition to the capability improvements, the aircraft’s design enables future technology upgrades.

“As the Army’s Heavy Lift platform of tomorrow, the CH-47F Block II provides increased capability while continuing support of the Army’s requirement to remain strategically responsive across the full spectrum of operations,” said Viva Kelly, U.S. Army Cargo Helicopters acting project manager. 

Additionally, the company’s Block II program improves aircraft sustainment. The improved reliability of the new rotor system minimizes unscheduled maintenance, and the simplified fuel system drives sustainment efficiency reducing maintenance burden and cost.

Chinook Block II

The Block II is a modernization that builds on a foundation of design excellence (the first flight of the Chinook was in 1961), well proven in more than 950 Chinooks built for 20 countries.

MH-47 Chinook Block II del SOCOM

CH-47 Block II for Special Forces. Photo: Boeing

In addition to new-build helicopters, the new Block II capabilities can be applied to upgrade older models, increasing their capabilities and extending their service life.

Improvements focus on 4 key areas:

  • An improved, strengthened airframe with increased use of parts common to the entire Chinook fleet.
  • New advanced rotor blades, constructed of composite materials and with redesigned tips, which alone allow a 680 kg increase in the load the Chinook can lift.
  • Simplified fuel tanks, going from 6 individual tanks to only 2, reducing the overall weight of the aircraft and increasing the fuel it can carry.
  • Powertrain that allows more efficient delivery of power from the turbines to the rotor, increasing torque output by 9%.

The benefits of the original design, coupled with modern technologies, will allow Chinooks to fly beyond 2060.

Deja un comentario