Sikorsky has introduced RAIDER X, its concept for a coaxial helicopter specifically designed as a Light-Attack Reconnaissance Helicopter.
The aircraft is being offered through the US Army’s Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft (FARA) programme.
“RAIDER X converges everything we’ve learned in years of developing, testing and refining X2 Technology and delivers warfighters a dominant, survivable and intelligent system that will excel in tomorrow’s battlespace where aviation overmatch is critical,” said Frank St. John, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems.
“The X2 Technology family of aircraft is a low-risk solution and is scalable based on our customers’ requirements”.
To date, the firm say that X2 aircraft have achieved/demonstrated:
- Speeds in excess of 250 knots
- High altitude operations in excess of 9,000 feet
- Low-speed and high-speed maneuver envelopes out to 60+ degrees angle of bank
- ADS-33B (Aeronautical Design Standard) Level 1 handling qualities with multiple pilots
- Flight controls optimization and vibration mitigation
“The power of X2 is game changing. It combines the best elements of low-speed helicopter performance with the cruise performance of an airplane,” said Sikorsky experimental test pilot Bill Fell, a retired US Army pilot who has flown nearly every RAIDER test flight.
“Every flight we take in our S-97 RAIDER today reduces risk and optimizes our FARA prototype, RAIDER X.”
The aircraft will be competing against the Invictus.