Capability Gaps in USMC Medium Lift
MARINE CORPS COMBAT DEVELOPMENT COMMAND QUANTICO VA
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Currently, the Marine Corps is in the process of fielding two new rotary-wing airframes which are touted to replace the venerable CH-46E. Both the MV-22 and UH-1Y airframes offer a tremendous increase in capabilities for the Marine Corps in several different flight regimes, but with the increases also come a major hole in abilities for the MAGTFs regarding medium lift capabilities. The CH-46E is an old airframe and needs to be replaced. The current options will bring new capabilities but will not fill the capability gap between light utility aircraft and heavy lift aircraft. The Marine Corps must field an additional medium lift platform because a significant capabilities gap will exist between the UH-1Y, the MV-22, and what is currently available with the CH-46E with its small downwash signature, rapid loading and unloading of cargo, and ability to fit into tight Landing Zones without damaging foreign relations.