Despite failures, winged Chinook experiment led to Army Aviation fleet improvements

When building the world’s finest aircraft for the world’s finest fighting force, experimentation is key to getting it right, and one aircraft provided the trial and error necessary to keep Army Aviation’s heavy lifter flying high.

In 1969, the Army and then-Boeing Vertol entered into a partnership to improve upon their cargo helicopter fleet, and thus the BV-347 was borne from a CH-47A Chinook that was provided by the Army as a technology demonstrator, according to retired CW5 Jim Kale, who now serves as a tour guide for the U.S. Army Aviation Museum.

The aircraft, which sits on the west lawn of the museum, was created for the sole purpose of trying out new technologies, said Kale.


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