The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) is set to purchase the Honeywell 55-L-714A engines and spares to enhance their fleet of Chinook helicopters, in a $185m deal.

Honeywell Aerospace Defense & Space president Garrett Mikita said that beginning next year, Honeywell would commence fitting UK Chinooks with its upgraded 55-L-714A engine.

“The engine increases power by 17%, and maintenance intervals and reduces fuel consumption by nearly 5%,” Mikita said.

RAF Odiham station commander group captain Andy Taylor said the engine would increase the lift capacity of their aircraft in Afghanistan, broaden safety margins when the aircraft is heavy, reduce operating costs and equip the aircraft to its out-of-service date.

The multimission, heavy-lift transport helicopter is used for moving troops, artillery, ammunition, fuel, water, barrier materials, supplies and equipment on the battlefield as well as used for humanitarian and disaster relief missions.

The new enhanced Chinook fleet will be operated by Royal Air Force and upgraded by Vector Aerospace at Fleetlands, Gosport.