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October 29/20: Australia And Singapore A Royal Australian Navy (RAN) Canberra-class amphibious assault ship has embarked a Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) CH-47 heavy-lift helicopter on its flight deck for the first time, marking a new level of interoperability between the two armed forces. The aircraft underwent deck landing qualification on HMAS Adelaide (L 01), the RAN’s second Canberra-class vessel, as part of Exercise ‘Sea Wader 2020’, which took place off the coast of Queensland, Australia. “The ability to operate our largest amphibious vessels with Singapore’s CH-47 Chinook helicopters means we can work together to mobilize and move personnel or supplies at sea, and enhance our combined joint capability”, said Linda Reynolds, Australia’s Minister for Defense, in a statement.
DII FOCUS articles offer in-depth, updated looks at significant military programs of record; this FOCUS Article covers the CH-47F/MH-47G Chinook helicopter programs, in the USA and abroad. These helicopters’ distinctive “flying banana” twin-rotor design stems from the brilliant work of aviation pioneer Frank Piasecki. It gives Chinooks the ability to adjust their positioning very precisely, while carrying a large airframe whose load capacity has made it the world’s most popular heavy-lift helicopter. The USA expects to be operating Chinooks in their heavy-lift role past 2030.
The CH-47F looks similar to earlier models, but offers a wide range of improvements in almost every aspect of design and performance. While the related HH-47’s $10-15 billion CSAR-X program win was terminated, delivery orders continue for CH-47Fs and for MH-47G Special Forces configuration helicopters. International orders or formal requests have also come in from Australia, Britain, Canada, Italy, the Netherlands, Turkey, and the UAE, with India and other countries expected to follow.
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