Boeing said on Friday that it has completed the first flights of Apache and Chinook military helicopters which will be delivered to India next year.
“We look forward to delivering this phenomenal capability to India,” said David Koopersmith, vice president and general manager, Boeing Vertical Lift. “From coastal operations to high-altitude mountainous missions, these aircraft will play vital roles with the Indian armed forces.”
India will receive 22 AH-64E Apache attack, and 15 CH-47F(I) Chinook transport, helicopters, as per contract signed in September 2015.
Additionally, the defence ministry last year approved the procurement of six Apache helicopters along with weapons systems from Boeing at a cost of Rs 4,168 crore for the Army. This will be its first fleet of attack choppers.
Indian industry partners such as Dynamatics are building large sections of Chinook, and Tata Boeing Aerospace Limited, a joint venture between Boeing and Tata Advanced Systems in Hyderabad, is building the complete fuselage of the Apache.
The AH-64E Apache is a leading multi-role attack helicopter and is flown by the US Army. Its latest features include joint digital operability, improved survivability and cognitive decision aiding.
The Chinook is a multi-role, vertical-lift platform, which is used for transport of troops, artillery, equipment and fuel. It is also used for humanitarian and disaster-relief operations, in missions such as transportation of relief supplies and mass evacuation of refugees.