US State Department approval has been granted for the acquisition of a further three Boeing CH-47F Chinooks for the Australian Army Aviation Corps. The US Defense Security Co-operation Agency (DSCA) confirmed clearance for the deal on December 21, saying it had also notified Congress of the proposed Foreign Military Sale on December 18.
Also part of the proposed deal would be three Force XXI Battle Command, Brigade & Below (FBCB2)/Blue Force Tracker (BFT) units, three Common Missile Warning Systems (CMWS), three Honeywell H-764 Embedded Global Positioning/Inertial Navigation Systems and three Infrared Signature Suppression Systems.
Additional items would include AN/APX-123A Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) Transponders, Defense Advanced Global Positioning System (GPS) Receiver (DAGR), AN/ARC-201D SINCGARS Airborne Radio Systems, AN/ARC-220 High Frequency Airborne Communication Systems, AN/ARC-231(V)(C) Airborne VHF/UHF/LOS SATCOM Communications Systems, KY-100 Secure Communication Systems, KIV-77 Common IFF Cryptographic Computers, AN/AVS-6 Aviator’s Night Vision Systems, AN/ARN-147 Very High Frequency (VHF) Omni Ranging/Instrument Landing System Receiver, AN/PYQ-10(C) Simple Key Loaders, AN/ARN-153 Tactical Airborne Navigation (TACAN) System, spares, and support.
The total contract value is estimated by the DSCA as $180million. The helicopters will join seven CH-47Fs already delivered to Australia, the last of which was handed over by Boeing on August 10. The new variant is replacing Australia’s existing older model CH-47Ds, which will be retired. Alan Warnes