The Australian Army has taken delivery of three CH-47F Chinooks from the Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group (CASG) two and half months ahead of schedule.
Acquired under the foreign military sales (FMS) programme, the new helicopters will expand the army’s battlefield capability in the areas of air mobile, air assault, aero medical evacuation and amphibious operations, as well as humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.
Equipped with updated avionics and next generation self-protection systems, the helicopters will be added to the army’s existing fleet of seven CH-47Fs.
CASG cargo helicopter management unit executive officer major Michael Hansen said: "Achieving delivery of three new aircraft inside four months demonstrates highly effective and coordinated project acquisition between the US Army, Vice Chief of the Defence Force Group, the Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group and Army Aviation.
"By employing the foreign military sales strategy the ADF also leverages the benefits of being part of a much larger fleet, which is growing to almost 500 CH-47Fs flying with the US Army.
"Not only does the ADF see the benefits of scale in the initial purchase price but the on-going cost of consumable and repairable items is greatly reduced."
Manufactured by Boeing, the CH-47F Chinook helicopters are powered by Honeywell T55-GA-714A engines.
Rockwell Collins’s provided a common avionics architecture system (CAAS) offering improved electrical, avionics and communication solutions for the helicopters.
CAAS includes multi-function displays, a digital modem, a BAE Systems digital advanced flight control system (DAFCS), and a data transfer system for storing pre-flight and mission data.
Image: The additional CH-47F Chinooks will boost the Australian Army’s medium lift helicopter capability. Photo: Courtesy of Capability Acquisition and Sustainment.