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CH-46E Sea Knight

Mission: The mission of the CH-46E Sea Knight helicopter in a Marine Medium Helicopter (HMM) squadron is to provide all-weather, day/night, night vision goggle (NVG) assault transport of combat troops, supplies, and equipment during amphibious and subsequent operations ashore. Troop assault is the primary function and the movement of supplies and equipment is secondary. Additional tasks are: combat and assault support for evacuation operations and other maritime special operations; over-water search and rescue augmentation; support for mobile forward refueling and rearming points; aeromedical evacuation of casualties from the field to suitable medical facilities.

Background: The CH-46 Sea Knight was first procured in 1964 to meet the medium-lift requirements of the Marine Corps in Viet Nam with a program buy of 600 aircraft. The aircraft has served the Marine Corps in all combat and peacetime environments. However, normal airframe operational and attrition rates have taken the assets to the point where a medium lift replacement is required. The safety and capability upgrades are interim measures to allow continued safe and effective operation of the Sea Knight fleet until a suitable replacement is fielded.

Primary function: Medium lift assault helicopter
Manufacturer: Boeing Vertol Company
Power plant: (2) GE-T58-16 engines
Burst: 1870 shaft horsepower (SHP)
Continuous: 1770 SHP
Rotors unfolded: 84 feet, 4 inches (25.69 meters)
Rotors folded: 45 feet, 7.5 inches (13.89 meters)
Rotors unfolded: 51 feet (15.54 meters)
Rotors folded: 14 feet, 9 inches (4.49 meters)
Height: 16 feet, 8 inches (5.08 meters)
Maximum takeoff weight: 24,300 pounds (11,032 kilograms)
Range: 132 nautical miles (151.8 miles) for an assault mission
Speed: 145 knots (166.75 miles per hour)
Ceiling: 10,000 feet (+)
Normal: 4 - pilot, copilot, crew chief, and 1st mechanic
Combat: 5 - pilot, copilot, crew chief, and 2 aerial gunners
Combat: maximum of 14 troops with aerial gunners
Medical evacuation: 15 litters and 2 attendants
Cargo: maximum of 4,000 pound (2270 kilograms) external load
Introduction date: January 1978
Unit Replacement Cost: No current medium-lift replacement, would not replace.

Inventory: 239

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Maintained by Robert Sherman
Originally created by John Pike
Updated Thursday, December 24, 1998 8:45:29 AM