Chi­nooks to be based at Chandi­garh

Vayu Aerospace and Defence - - Aviation & Defence In India -

Boe­ing CH-47F Chi­nook heavy-lift he­li­copters be­ing ac­quired by the In­dian Air Force are to be based at the Chandi­garh Air Force Sta­tion, “for which new fa­cil­i­ties are be­ing es­tab­lished”, ac­cord­ing to re­ports. The GoI had signed a con­tract with the US in Septem­ber 2015 for 15 CH-47 Chi­nook he­li­copters, with an op­tion for another four, the first of which are ex­pected to ar­rive in 2018. There is a par­al­lel con­tract for 22 Boe­ing AH-64 Apache at­tack he­li­copters.

“A cer­tain num­ber of Chi­nooks will be based in Chandi­garh,” a se­nior IAF of­fi­cer said. “Two hangars and a main­te­nance bay along with as­so­ci­ated tech­ni­cal and lo­gis­tics fa­cil­i­ties are to be set up here for the pur­pose.” CH-47F Chi­nooks, with a pay­load ca­pac­ity of around 10 tonnes will aug­ment the IAF’s ver­ti­cal heavy-lift ca­pa­bil­ity, which role was ear­lier ful­filled by the Soviet-era Mi-26 he­li­copters, also based at Chandi­garh. The Chi­nooks will heli-lift ar­tillery guns, ve­hi­cles, road con­struc­tion and en­gi­neer equip­ment as well as troops and sup­plies to moun­tain­ous sec­tors par­tic­u­larly in the north and north-east.

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