The Military took the first delivery of the Huey Helicopter on June 30, 1959. The helicopters were delivered without any armament although many were later fitted with guns and rockets. 14 of the machines were set up as trainers.
The original Huey’s had engines with a maximum horsepower of 860shp. In 1959, Bell Helicopter began fitting the UH-1 with a larger engine (T53-11) rated up to 1,100shp. The increase in horsepower allowed for a heavier helicopter, but was difficult for the alloy rotors to handle. As a result, the main rotors had to be redesigned with increased chord and a honeycomb filling aft of the spar.
With the extra horsepower from the T53-11 engine, the Huey’s cabin was enlarged to seat the pilot and eight passengers in three rows, or a crew of two and seven armed troops, or three stretchers, two sitting casualties and a medic; or a cargo load of 3,000lbs. The increase in lifting capacity was almost double the lifting capacity of the original XH-40 Helicopter. The latest version of the helicopter first flew in 1960. Most of the newer helicopters were fitted with guns and rockets. The typical armament included two 30mm cannons, or two packs each of 24 rockets, plus a 40mm grenade launcher.
Another benefit of the increase in carrying capacity and horsepower were the new tactical possibilities of the Huey. The US Army’s General Hamilton Howze was the Army’s first Director of Army Aviation and he was promoting the idea of moving Army infantry around the battlefield using helicopters instead of trucks. This wasn’t a new idea; US Marines had first tested the concept of moving troops with helicopters in 1948 in military exercises. The Marines used Helicopters extensively during the 1950’s to move troops around the jungles of Malaya and the French were using helicopters to help fight the insurgency in Algeria.
Originally posted at http://www.usmilitaryhelicopters.org
The Bell “Huey” Helicopter became one of the most recognizable aircraft in history during the Vietnam War. The Vietnam war was the first war shown on the television and the Huey Helicopter was seen by millions nightly.
The Huey has been used by all branches of the US Armed Forces and by most Allied nations. The Bell Helicopter Company has continued to develop the helicopter for more than four decades. The UH-1 started as a small utility machine in the 1950’s. With the Huey still in military and commercial use today, it has been built in huge numbers, exceeding those of any aircraft since 1945 except for the Antonov An-2.
The origins of the UH-1 started in the battlefields of the Korean War where the Bell 47 helicopter was used to recover thousands of wounded soldiers and delivered them to critical-care units called M.A.S.H. (Mobile Army Surgical Hospitals). The Bell 47 was a piston-powered helicopter that was slow, noisy, and unreliable, yet effective enough to convince the military that helicopters could have a positive effect in warfare.
Extreme Chinook Helicopter Troop Extraction. This is totally insane, but the pilot is awesome!
Check out this Chinook Helicopter Performance video. It's easy to think that flying Chinooks would be 'boring', but it's obviously a super powerfull helicopter.
Comparing different US military helicopters and sorting them into a top ten is always going to be a subjective exercise. Whatever list we come up with isn’t going to sit well with everyone. However, that isn’t going to stop us, so we have selected what we think are the top ten US military helicopters of all time.
The criteria was to select ten that had proved their worth in one way or another. Whether that’s ferrying troops around, rescuing them from harm, or bringing down fire and brimstone in support.
What follows is what we think are the top ten US military helicopters of all time.
The powerful Bell AH-1Z Viper Helicopter (formally the AH-1Z SuperCobra Helicopter) delivers state of the art dynamics, weapons and avionics to incorporate the latest in survivability. Capable. Flexible. Multi-mission. The AH-1Z Viper Helicopter is the ultimate in attack helicopters. With anti-armor capability, the Viper Helicopter engages and defeats the broadest array of threats at standoff ranges that defy imagination.