Boeing Chinook HC1 – Bravo November, 18 Sqn RAF, Falklands War 1982
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Corgi Aviation Archive 1/72 scale AA34202: RAF Chinook “Bravo November” from the Falklands war. It was fortunately airborne when the Atlantic Conveyer was hit and destroyed by Exocet missiles. The Chinook subsequently performed sterling service during the war, on one occasion transporting 80 paratroops into battle. Still in RAF front line service today; the aircraft surely has to be preserved as a modern day icon of British aviation history. This outstanding model has an opening rear door, suspension undercarriage and contra rotating rotors. Limited edition of 5,400 pieces.
Length 16.5 inches Rotorspan 10 inches
The Boeing CH-47 Chinook is an American twin-engine, tandem rotor heavy-lift helicopter. With a top speed of 170 knots (196 mph, 315 km/h) it is faster than contemporary utility and attack helicopters of the 1960s. The CH-47 is one of the few aircraft of that era that is still in production and front line service, with over 1,179 built to date. Its primary roles include troop movement, artillery emplacement and battlefield resupply. It has a wide loading ramp at the rear of the fuselage and three external-cargo hooks.
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 (see Boeing Chinook (UK variants)) being the largest users. The CH-47 is among the heaviest lifting Western helicopters.
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.
A commercial model of the Chinook, the Boeing-Vertol Model 234, is used worldwide for logging, construction, fighting forest fires, and supporting petroleum extraction operations. On 15 December 2006, the Columbia Helicopters company of the Salem, Oregon, metropolitan area, purchased the Type Certificate of the Model 234 from Boeing. The Chinook has also been licensed to be built by companies outside of the United States, such as Elicotteri Meridionali (now AgustaWestland) in Italy, Kawasaki in Japan.
The Chinook was used both by Argentina and the United Kingdom during the Falklands War in 1982. The Argentine Air Force and the Argentine Army each deployed two CH-47C helicopters, which were widely used in general transport duties. Of the Army’s aircraft, one was destroyed on the ground by a Harrier while the other was captured by the British and reused after the war. Both Argentine Air Force helicopters returned to Argentina and remained in service until 2002.
Approximately 163 CH-47Ds served in Kuwait and Iraq during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm in 1990–91.
The CH-47D has seen wide use in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom in Iraq. The Chinook is being used in air assault missions, inserting troops into fire bases and later bringing food, water, and ammunition. It is also the casualty evacuation (casevac) aircraft of choice in the British Armed Forces. In today’s usage it is typically escorted by attack helicopters such as the AH-64 Apache for protection. Its tandem rotor design and lift capacity have been found to be particularly useful in the mountainous terrain of Afghanistan where high altitudes and temperatures limit the use of the UH-60 Black Hawk. The CH-47F is being fielded by more units such as the 101st Combat Aviation Brigade and 4th Combat Aviation Brigade in the U.S. Army as it continues to operate in Afghanistan.
The Chinooks of several nations have participated in the Afghanistan War, including aircraft from Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Canada, and Australia. Despite the age of the Chinook, it is still in heavy demand, in part due its proven versatility and ability to operate in demanding environments such as Afghanistan.