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Sikorsky’s S-97 Raider To Be On Radar Soon

Sikorsky’s S-97 Raider To Be On Radar Soon

The S-97 Raider a concept is the proposed high-speed scout & attack helicopter that is currently being developed by Sikorsky Aircraft. The company has planned on offering it for the U.S Army’s – Armed Aerial Scout program, and it will also have some other uses. Now, Mark Miller, the vice president of research and engineering at Sikorsky Aircraft has confirmed that they are considering plans of developing a slightly smaller version of the S-97 Raider which will be deployed for civilian use. He added that the S-97 is a production-ready and very effectively scaled-up version of the impressive X2 demonstrator.

Impressive Technology

Both these helicopters have contra-rotating rotor blades & a pusher propeller which enables hi-speed forward flight. The civil variant of this S-97 would be perfect for offshore oil, search & rescue as well as for VIP transport, says Miller. While their X2 achieved the maximum cruising speed of 253 knots, the target cruising speed of this largely composite S-97 is 220-knots.

At 11,000 pounds mtow, the 8 -place S-97 will be around two times heavier than the X2. The 1st of two S-97 prototypes is now being assembled at the company’s Innovations facility situated West Palm Beach, Florida. This is where an almost complete fuselage had been shown to some journalists recently. The power-on tests are slated to begin by the end of June and the rotor & pusher propeller systems will start ground-testing this fall. The projection is that this aircraft’s first flight will take place by the end of 2014.

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