Chinook Helicopter Fairing
- Durable metal design for use in field and combat environments
- Manufacturing platform meeting federal certification requirements
- Protects rotor transmission machinery
- Improves vehicle performance by reducing drag
The CH-47 Chinook Helicopter Fairing is a transmission fairing designed to reduce form drag and interference drag. By fitting over parts of the rotor mechanism that would otherwise be exposed, the fairing allows for a more aerodynamic and protected model. The part was a vital necessity for the exceptionally long lived line of Chinook transport helicopters. As such, the component’s production required stringent adherence to specifications and certifications at every level of manufacture.
The major challenge of this OEM solution was in the reverse engineering of a component that was developed over forty years ago. Since the transmission fairing was a legacy component, the original OEM provided replacements for most of the vehicle’s life cycle. This resulted in a Technical Data Package (TDP) that included insufficient documentation, missing revisions and outdated drawings. In order to effectively manufacture this crucial component PPI’s engineering and design team transformed the data from outdated 2D media into current CAD 3D renderings. During this thorough review process, the engineers also identified missing documents and revisions to the TDP.
Due to the Chinook’s lengthy operational life cycle and the OEM providing the entirety of previous replacement parts, this item had not been through federal First Article testing in quite some time. When PPI submitted its First Article Test Report, the Government Quality Assurance Representative remarked that he was “overwhelmed” with PPI’s “thorough documentation.” Not only did this re-engineered pass first article inspection, it was immediately installed on an operational Chinook helicopter upon fit-testing completion.
With the successful completion of this project PPI has again shown that it can meet rigorous government specifications quickly and effectively. The superior processes brought to bear on this project have allowed PPI to be one of only two manufacturers of this crucial flight component. By presenting a different kind of challenge to PPI’s team of experts, the Chinook project has allowed PPI to refine a stable and effective reverse engineering service offering.