February 20, 2007 The first production CH-47F Chinook helicopter is heading for the battlefield in the near future with the news that Operational Testing (OT) for the U.S. Army has begun at Fort Campbell in Kentucky. The aircraft successfully completed acceptance and developmental flight testing last December. The aircraft is the first of 452 CH-47F helicopters included in the U.S. Army Cargo Helicopter modernization program. It features a newly designed, modernized airframe and a Rockwell Collins Common Avionics Architecture System cockpit and BAE Digital Advanced Flight Control System. The advanced avionics provide improved situational awareness for flight crews with an advanced digital map display and a data transfer system that allows storing of preflight and mission data. Improved survivability features include Common Missile Warning and Improved Countermeasure Dispenser Systems.
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