Long range combat aircraft is all set to get launched

Combat Aircrafts

US army is in its final phase of development and is all ready to show off its might in the skies by launching futuristic long-range combat aircraft 


Two different companies 1- Bell & 2-Sikorsky got contracts by the US army to continue developing and risk reduction(for its 2nd phase) of the future long-range assault combat aircraft by the year 2030.

Aviation and missile technology’s joint venture awarded this contract. Simultaneously, Sikorsky and Bell will analyze the requirements for SOC (special operation command), eg. Medical evacuations and export the features for this aircraft to other countries.

What’s exciting:

According to sources, the Army will choose a winner amongst the team that will churn out the best prototypes. Working on competitive demonstration and risk reduction (CDRR) started nearly a year ago by a Joint Multi-Role Technology Demonstration (JMR-TD).

Both companies(after obtaining the contracts) are busy analyzing the proper requirements for this concept-based design to produce the FLRAA(future long-range assault aircraft).

Bell and Sikorsky flew its V-280 Valor tilt-rotor and Sb-1 Defiant coaxial demonstrator combat aircraft through JMR-TD(Joint Multi-Role Technology Demonstration) and CDRR(competitive and risk reduction).

Bell-V-280 Valor tilt-rotor flying
Bell-V-280 Valor tilt-rotor

Gains & Losses:

Sikorsky’s Sb-1 Defiant coaxial caused trouble while taking off from the ground as its rotor blades got issue during manufacturing causing JMR-TD phase to start a year later than expected.

On March 31st, Bell company claimed that their designed combat aircraft flew more than 200 hours nearly in 160 individual test flights. However, Sb-1 Defiant coaxial demonstrator completed 26 hours in 31 flights. 

The CDRR will permit the winner to start working on reviews of the preliminary design of the vehicle and its weaponry; paving the way to make an earlier decision and would buy some extra time for designing, building, and testing the prototype; of this futuristic flying vehicle.”

Brig-Gen Rob Barrie(Army’s program executive officer for aviation) said in an interview, “the award of these agreements is a significant milestone for FLRAA.” 

Furthermore, he said, “CDRR Phase II accelerates digital engineering design work to the subsystem level and mitigates industrial base workforce risk while maintaining competition.” 

In another statement, he said, “Army leaders could make early informed decisions ensuring FLRAA capabilities as they are not only affordable but that they meet Multi-Domain operations requirements.”

Sikorsky-Sb-1 Defiant coaxial demonstrator flying
Sikorsky-Sb-1 Defiant coaxial demonstrator

Bottom line:

The Army wishes to own and deploy a future recce combat aircraft while working on FLRAA at the same time, to become capable of using a vehicle that will be multirole and it could be used in any terrain with a much higher speed and increased range.

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