Get ready for a thrilling ride as we take off with the top 5 baddest helicopters in the US military arsenal! In this article, I outline the top 5 military helicopters used by the United States military, from the dual-purpose V-22 Osprey to the heavy-lifting CH-47 Chinook. Let’s get in.
Number 5: AH-64 Apache
The Boeing AH-64 Apache is an American twin-turboshaft attack helicopter with a tail wheel-type landing gear, a nose-mounted sensor suite and a 30 mm M230 chain gun. It also has four hardpoints for carrying armament and stores. The Apache has effective systems redundancy to improve combat survivability. Developed by Hughes Helicopters, it first flew in 1975, and the Army selected it over the Bell YAH-63 in 1976. Since then, multiple nations have used it in various conflicts, such as Panama, the Persian Gulf, Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq.
Number 4: UH-60 Black Hawk
The Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk is a four-blade, twin-engine, medium-lift utility helicopter manufactured by Sikorsky Aircraft. It won the US Army’s Utility Tactical Transport Aircraft System competition in 1976 and entered service with the Army in 1979 to replace the Bell UH-1 Iroquois as the Army’s tactical transport helicopter. The UH-60 can carry 11 troops, and lift 2,600 pounds of cargo internally or 9,000 pounds of cargo externally by a sling. It can perform various missions, including the tactical transport of troops, electronic warfare and aeromedical evacuation.
Number 3: CH-47 Chinook
Developed and manufactured by American rotorcraft company Vertol and Boeing Vertol respectively, the Boeing CH-47 Chinook is a tandem-rotor helicopter. It’s among the top heavy-lifting Western helicopters, capable of carrying multiple cargo loads. With a top speed of 170 knots, it’s also one of the fastest helicopters in the US inventory. Improved and more powerful versions have been developed since its introduction in 1962, with the CH-47D being one of the most powerful variants.
Number 2: Sikorsky SH-60 Seahawk
The Sikorsky SH-60/MH-60 Seahawk is a multi-mission helicopter used by the United States Navy, which uses the H-60 airframe under the model designations SH-60B, SH-60F, HH-60H, MH-60R and MH-60S. Based on the UH-60 Black Hawk, it has a smaller footprint aboard ships. The Seahawk can handle several different missions, including anti-submarine warfare (ASW), naval special warfare insertion and so on. It can deploy aboard different types of ships in the United States Navy, including an air-capable frigate, cruiser, expeditionary transfer dock or aircraft carrier.
Number 1: V-22 Osprey
The Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey is a tiltrotor military aircraft with both VTOL and STOL capabilities. Developed in response to the failed Operation Eagle Claw in 1980, the V-22 began flight testing in 1989 and entered service with the USMC in 2007 and the USAF in 2009. It’s done transportation and medevac operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Kuwait. The V-22’s nacelles rotate forward 90 degrees for horizontal flight and convert it into a more fuel-efficient, high-speed turboprop aircraft.
The US Military’s 5 Most Capable Military Helicopters
I’ve highlighted the top five military aircraft used by the United States, including the AH-64 Apache, UH-60 Black Hawk, CH-47 Chinook, Sikorsky SH-60 Seahawk and the V-22 Osprey. Each aircraft has its own unique capabilities and has been used in various conflicts around the world. For more information on the US military and veterans, visit USMilitary.com.