The Concept Design and Analysis (CDA) awards from the U.S. Army's Applied Aviation Technology Directorate (AATD) are in direct support of evaluating joint requirements and Joint Heavy Lift (JHL) rotorcraft for the armed forces.
"Sikorsky is very excited about our two X2 Technology Joint Heavy Lift awards. We see this as a real opportunity to show the versatility of a new generation of coaxial rotor technology. We are looking forward to supporting the joint requirements process with two credible concepts that offer unique capabilities to the future force," said Carey Bond, vice president of corporate strategy for Sikorsky.
Sikorsky's efforts will focus on applying coaxial rotor X2 Technology to a super heavy-lift coaxial rotor crane that can cruise at 165 knots and a high-speed super heavy lift configuration capable of cruising at 245 knots.
In June, Sikorsky Aircraft announced plans to build and test a demonstrator for a new class of coaxial X2 Technology helicopters that maintain or improve on the vertical flight capabilities of helicopters and whose high-speed configuration will cruise at 250 knots.
X2 Technology refers to a suite of technologies Sikorsky will apply to achieve new levels of performance in coaxial helicopters. The X2 Technology Demonstrator is funded by Sikorsky Aircraft with development taking place in collaboration with its Schweizer Aircraft subsidiary.
X2 Technology aircraft will hover, land vertically, maneuver at low speeds, and transition seamlessly from hover to forward flight like a helicopter. In a high-speed configuration, one or more 'pusher props' are part of an integrated auxiliary propulsion system to enable high speed with no need to physically reconfigure the aircraft in flight.
AATD describes the CDA activity as defining the "art of the possible, the science of the probable and the design of the affordable" JHL vertical take-off and landing rotorcraft that enables future joint concepts of operations. The CDA will set the technical foundation for joint requirement analysis leading to design concept and performance projections that can reach Technology Readiness Level 6 by 2012.
The AATD contracts call for the conceptual and preliminary design of a baseline aircraft with a 250 nm radius along with eight variations to identify the impact of changes in payload, range, environmental conditions, and shipboard compatibility on aircraft size, performance, operational suitability, cost, schedule, and development risk.
Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacturing and service. Sikorsky is a subsidiary of United Technologies Corporation (NYSE: UTX), of Hartford, Conn., which provides a broad range of high-technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.