The American company Sikorsky has presented the project of perspective high-speed reconnaissance helicopter Raider-X.
As noted by the manufacturer, Raider-X will be a larger and more advanced version of the current S-97 Raider Sikorsky, used since 2015.
Both helicopters use advanced – but not battle-tested – Sikorsky sophisticated helicopters to achieve speeds and ranges that ordinary helicopters cannot match.
The helicopter, capable of speeds up to 380 km / h, is made according to the coaxial scheme with a pushing screw in the tail – the same solution uses the S-97 Raider, on the basis of which is developed Raider-X. Like the prototype, the Raider-X fuselage consists of composite materials that provide radar visibility and ease of machine.
Interestingly, the less powerful S-97 Sikorsky, which has the same design, has already met the 207 knots (384 km / h) speed standard in the tests, exceeding the army’s requirements for speed. But at the same time, the X2 model showed a speed of 250 knots (463 km / h). It seems that Sikorsky is actually slowing down with each new component helicopter to focus on optimizing other features.
The super-rigid rotors provide the lift required at high speeds by relying on a thrust screw to provide traction. And the streamlined Raider-X fuselage is actually quite wide: the pilots sit side by side, allowing them to see each other’s displays and show each other items. The cabin behind is large enough for passengers or a bulky weapon compartment.
The prospective car will be 27 percent larger than the prototype high-speed reconnaissance helicopter S-97. Other details about Raider-X are not specified.
The Raider-X helicopter is presented under the FARA (Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft) competition, which should find a replacement for the already discontinued Bell OH-58 Kiowa lightweight multipurpose helicopter. The FARA competition should lead to the creation of a line of fundamentally new helicopters, which, in particular, would be distinguished by higher speeds.
At the beginning of October this year, the American company Bell Helicopter presented its project of high-speed reconnaissance helicopter Bell 360 Invictus. This machine will compete in the FARA competition with Sikorsky’s development.