|Boeing CH-47SD Chinook||Fleet Information|
Before ROCA acquired the CH-47SD, it had operated
three Boing Vertol 234MLR (Multi-purpose Long Range),
which had been delivered in 1985.
These are the civilian version of the military CH-47, which differs externally
from early CH-47 models in that the 234MLR has a longer nose to house a
weather radar, larger fuselage-flank fuel tanks, and airline-style windows.
ROCA 234MLR, with tail numbers from 7201 to 7203,
had been used for VIP transport, troop and cargo carrying, and disaster relief.
In mid 1990s, the 234 MLR had long since gone out of production. They became increasingly difficult to support and unable to meet the heavy-lift requirements. ROCA was hoping to replace the 234MLR with the military version CH-47. On October 9, 1998, the United States Department of Defense announced the possible sale to Taiwan nine CH-47SD (Super D) and three spare engines.
The CH-47SD is the latest CH-47 model, aimed primarily at the international market. It provides several improvements over early CH-47, including long-range fuel tanks with 2,068-gallon capacity, doubling the operational range of the earlier D-model; a fully integrated glass cockpit and automated flight controls; and the longer "radar nose" that can accommodate radar antennas, found on the MH-47E Special Operations version. The CH-47SD has a three-person crew and standard seating for 37 passengers in the main cabin, although up to 55 troop seats can be installed.
The CH-47SD's propulsion system features two AlliedSignal T55-L-714A engines with full authority digital engine controls (FADEC). With 4,075 maximum continuous shaft horsepower (3,039 kW), these engines provide output more than eight percent greater than any CH-47D. The 714As engines provide the ability to fly at a 54,000-lb. maximum gross weight at higher density altitudes than the CH-47D and cruise at 140 knots (250 km/hr) at 50,000-lb mission weight on a standard day. Vertical rate of climb will be 1,846 feet (563 meters) and ceiling 11,100 feet (3,383 meters), with a range of more than 650 nautical miles (1,208 km). This performance is available with a useful load of up to 27,686 lbs. (12,553 kg).
ROCA's CH-47SD are fitte with a rescue hoist above the forward cabin door. They are also equipped with forward and rear radar warning receivers. Chaff dispensers are installed on both sides of the fuselage and near the rear cargo door.
The initial letter of agreement (LOA) for procurement of three CH-47SD and a material order for production of six additional helicopters was signed by ROCA in April 1999. The FMS contract was awarded to Boeing at the end of 1999. In 2002, the 234MLR were transferred to National Fire Administration (NFA) for fire-fighting and rescue missions.
In anticipation for the new helicopters, ROCA sent former 234MLR crews to the United States for training in 2001. Deliveries of the CH-47SD commenced in 2002. Conversion to the type was completed in 2003. On June 20,2003, the nine CH-47SD were formally unveiled to the press in the commisioning ceremony. They are currently assigned to the Air Transport Battalion, which stood up on the same day.