Helicopter vs Chopper
Helicopter is a winged aircraft where the wing on the top is rotating unlike airplanes that have fixed wings that are stationary. These rotating wings allow and help the rotorcraft to take off, land, and to hover over a particular point in space. Helicopter is smaller in size and with these attributes, it is ideal to fly in small, congested places where there are no run ways, and not enough space to take off and land. It is mostly used by armed forces, though VIP’s also make use of these helicopters to move from one place to another as they are more convenient, and do not require moving to airports. In many parts of the world, chopper is the word that is used for helicopters. Both words are used as if they are synonyms; In fact, it is common to see the words being used interchangeably by the same person. Let us see if there is any difference between helicopter and chopper.
In armed forces or defense industry, helicopter is the word reserved for such an aircraft. The word comes from French helicopter (helix meaning twisted or curved, pteron meaning wing). It is only laymen who do not know much about the machine refer to them as choppers. One thing is certain. Chopper is a more casual word and never used formally in companies. It is like calling a television a T.V. Chopper is an American slang for the formal helicopter, though the word has been adopted and used in all parts of the world today. Hollywood movies have contributed significantly to the use of the word chopper.
Despite the slang being very popular outside Air Force, you might get a shock to hear this. If you are a student in US army flight helicopter schools and use the slang for a helicopter, you could be asked to do 10 pushups on the spot as a form of punishment. It becomes clear then that pilots never use the word chopper and say they fly helicopters. Chopper is a term used for motorcycles also, and it is common to hear people saying they have parked their chopper at such a parking place.
Maybe it is because of a helicopter making chop, chop, chop sound when its wings are rotating at a high speed that some people used the word chopper for them and the word stuck. Today, chopper has been accepted by one and sundry, though the formal word remains helicopter.
What is the difference between Helicopter and Chopper?
· Helicopter is an aircraft with rotating wings on top of the body that has the capacity to take off and land without a runway.
· Chopper refers to the same helicopter though it is casual; rather slang word used more by media and laymen than those who are pilots or personnel from US army.