A new group of firms have been tapped to support the US Army’s future long-range combat helicopter program.
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Lockheed Martin subsidiary Sikorsky and Boeing have onboarded new members of Team DEFIANT — a co-operative set up to develop DEFIANT X, an advanced helicopter proposed for the US Army’s Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft (FLRAA) program.
The new members include:
- Collins Aerospace;
- Parker Aerospace;
- Magnaghi Aeronautica; and
- Marotta Controls.
“Team DEFIANT is building a strong nationwide supply chain to provide the Army a transformational aircraft,” Paul Lemmo, president of Sikorsky, said.
“This team and its proven experience will ensure that DEFIANT X is a low-risk, reliable and survivable aircraft for our Soldiers and the Army’s long-range assault mission.”
Mark Cherry, vice president and general manager of Boeing Vertical Lift, stressed DEFIANT X’s suitability for the US Army’s FLRAA requirements.
“Leveraging many existing supplier relationships, we’ve put together the best industry team to deliver a purpose-built, low-risk and cost-effective next-generation aircraft that can operate across multiple theatres, well into the future,” Cherry said.
This latest announcement comes just over a month after Honeywell joined Team DEFIANT — a Sikorsky and Boeing-led co-operative participating in the US Army’s FLRAA competition.
The company’s HTS7500 turboshaft engine has been selected to power the DEFIANT X — an advanced manoeuvrable weapon system proposed for selection, designed to fly twice as far and twice as fast as the Black Hawk.
DEFIANT X is billed as a complete weapon system, which builds on the handling qualities and capabilities of the team’s technology demonstrator, SB-1 DEFIANT.
The helicopter is currently undergoing testing in a digital combat environment.
Team DEFIANT X entered the competition in September 2021, with the US Army expected to award a contract later this year.
[Related: Honeywell engine to power DEFIANT X]