A CH-53K King Stallion completed a two-week period of sea trials in the Atlantic last month.
This was the first opportunity to see the aircraft working in a modern naval environment, say Naval Air Systems Command here.
Testing took place on the USS Wasp, a landing helicopter dock operated by the U.S. Navy.
“I’m very pleased with how the ship tests went,” said Col. Jack Perrin, H-53 helicopters program manager.
“We were able to assess the K taking off and landing day, night, and with night vision goggles and it performed extremely well.”
According to the CH-53K integrated test team, the sea trials are a series of tests to evaluate the performance of the aircraft at sea.
“Tests performed during the two weeks included: launch and recovery; rotor start and shutdown; blade fold; and shipboard compatibility testing – all in increasing wind speed and varying wind directions relative to the aircraft.”
Ship compatibility testing includes towing the aircraft around the deck and in the hangar, performing maintenance while aboard the ship, ensuring the aircraft fits in all the locations it needs to around the ship deck and hangar, and evaluating chain/tie-down procedures.