For decades, helicopters have played a pivotal role in modern U.S. military operations, offering vital air support, troop and equipment transport, and fulfilling diverse functions on the battlefield. (See, this country has the most attack helicopters.)
To identify all of the helicopters in active service in the U.S. military, 24/7 Wall St. referenced the 2023 report, World Air Forces, from FlightGlobal, an aviation and aerospace industry website. We ranked helicopters by the number of units in active service. We included all variants of each helicopter in the count and excluded all helicopters from the Coast Guard. Supplemental data regarding the type of helicopter, how many are in active service, and how many are on order came from FlightGlobal. Data on each helicopter’s first flight and variants came from various military and historical sources.
The Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk, a variation of the S-70, is currently used by multiple militaries around the world taking multiple variants. This helicopter has been involved in numerous high-profile military operations over the years, including one with a blockbuster Hollywood movie named after it “Black Hawk Down.” It is even said that a stealth version of the Black Hawk was used in the operation that took out Osama bin Laden, according to NPR.
Noticeably, towards the top of this list, the helicopters represented play a variety of different roles via their unique variants. Militaries tend to stick with what works, then repurpose and outfit when operational needs change. One example is the Black Hawk, which has been in service for nearly half a century and has more variants than any other helicopter on this list as it serves a multitude of roles, including: search & rescue, medium-lift operations, and even as a gunship, across military branches.
Repurposing helicopters in part explains why many of the helicopters on the list have been in the service for decades. This list is populated by helicopters first flown in the mid-1950s all the way to last decade.
Throughout the U.S. Armed Forces, the Army has the most helicopters of any other branch. The Black Hawk, Apache, and Chinook make up a majority of Army helicopters. Each of these rotor-based aircraft is used to transport troops in and out of combat zones among various other roles. (Also see, every plane and helicopter in the U.S. Marines.)
Military helicopters play a crucial role in modern military operations and those in active service in the U.S. military are some of the most advanced in the world. Here is a look at all of the helicopters in active service in the U.S. military.
Click here to see every helicopter in the US military.
Sponsored: Find a Qualified Financial Advisor
Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to 3 fiduciary financial advisors in your area in 5 minutes. Each advisor has been vetted by SmartAsset and is held to a fiduciary standard to act in your best interests. If you’re ready to be matched with local advisors that can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
Source: Read Full Article