"In June 2018, in part due to congressional concerns, the Army announced a new modernization strategy and designated the Next Generation Combat Vehicle (NGCV) as the program toreplace the M-2 Bradley."Originally yes since then NGCV became a portfolio of programs. Including OMFV, AMPV, MPF and more.
so,quote of the day comes from inside of
Army Secretary Defends Decision to Cut CH-47 Chinook Program
Subcommittee chairman Rep. Pete Visclosky ... asked Army leaders to explain why the service decided to delay procurement of the Chinook Block II upgrade for five years, when a year ago it submitted the effort as a program of record.
... goes on below due to size limitThe fate of the CH-47F Chinook — the latest model of the iconic heavy lift helicopter that first saw service in Vietnam — depends on three facts:
The decision to upgrade the CH-47 to carry heavier cargo,
- The Army cut the planned Block II upgrade of the CH-47 from its 2020-2024 budget plan, transferring the funds to programs higher in its
- But generals now say they might buy Block II after all, eventually. The decision depends in part on how the new
- But the manufacturer, Boeing, says it can’t keep its
“These decisions were made before the
“They were in many ways designed for a different conflict,” Esper said. “[That] doesn’t mean we won’t use them in future conflicts, but now my emphasis has to be on rebuilding my armor, rebuilding my fighting vehicles, having aircraft that can penetrate
Secretary Esper sounds like his mind is made up. Army aviators are more ambivalent — and Boeing is making its case to Congress.
“We have discussed it with Boeing, [and] we want to work closely with industry to maintain the industrial base so we can keep those options open,”
FLRAA is primarily a replacement for the UH-60 Black Hawk, but “it may replace some of the CH-47s,” McConville said. For some missions the Chinook does today, he said, “maybe we don’t need as big of an aircraft to do that.”
McConville didn’t specify which missions he meant, but my best guess is he’s referring to so-called “high/hot” missions. In certain conditions, especially over Afghan mountains during summer, the air gets so thin that the UH-60 simply can’t go high enough. That forces the Army to use the much larger and more powerful Chinook for missions that would normally be done by smaller aircraft. The FLRAA should have better high altitude performance than the UH-60, so it could take on some of these Chinook missions.
That said, the Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft can’t replace Chinook in its core competency as a heavy lift transport. That’s because FLRAA will carry 12 fully loaded infantry or up to five tons of cargo, while a Chinook can carry dozens of troops or
“It’s an incredible aircraft,” Gen. McConville said of the CH-47 in his address to the Army aviation conference. “It’s also one of the youngest aircraft in the fleet.”
That’s because the current force is made up of CH-47F Block I aircraft: The first was built in 2004 and the last is scheduled for delivery in 2020. Now, even if the Army doesn’t upgrade these aircraft to Block II, it’ll still have to overhaul them at some point, to some degree, to keep them in service. (At one point, the Army was going to
So the Army is moving rapidly on Future Vertical Lift — both the FLRAA transport and the
The problem is that “some point” can’t be too far down the road, or the option to build the new aircraft will be gone.
The Army does want to buy the Block II upgrade for the Special Operations version of the Chinook, the MH-47G. It still plans to purchase 69 of those aircraft, with the first to be delivered next year. There are also international orders for Chinooks — most recently
But for now, at least, the Army has cut production of CH-47F Block II aircraft to just three test aircraft. The plan had been to build 473. There’s no way foreign customers or special operators can make up for a cut that deep.
“This is a production line that depends heavily on US Army production,” Boeing exec Randy Rotte told reporters this morning. The company is currently finishing up the last order of CH-47F Block I, and if Block II doesn’t follow on schedule, Boeing and its suppliers will lose efficiencies of scale. That could drive up the cost of both the special ops MH-47Gs and of spare parts for all CH-47 models.
So what does Boeing want? First, there’s the $28 million in 2020 funding originally planned to buy long-lead items to prepare for CH-47F Block II production, funding the Army cut in its
Finding $28 million in the