A highly anticipated opportunity for contractors to demonstrate their helicopters for the U.S. Army’s armed aerial scout (AAS) requirement, originally planned for this spring, has been postponed until this summer or fall as the Army contemplates improving or replacing the aging OH-58D Kiowa Warrior in the manned reconnaissance role.
The field of companies offering armed scout helicopters to the U.S. Army and other militaries has grown with the addition of MD Helicopters, which is proposing the MD 540F, an upgrade of its MD 530F light helicopter, equipped with a weapons management system from Israel’s Elbit Systems. The offering is based on the same airframe MD Helicopters supplies to Boeing for the AH-6i, which is also a competitor for the Army’s armed aerial scout (AAS) program.
Companies are lining up for the U.S. Navy’s medium-range, maritime unmanned aerial system (MRMUAS) requirement, a planned follow-on to the MQ-8B Fire Scout.
The U.S. Army wants companies vying for its armed aerial scout (AAS) requirement to demonstrate their proposals next spring to help inform its analysis of replacing the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior in the manned reconnaissance ro
EADS North America said it has started deliveries to U.S. Army National Guard units of the UH-72A Lakota light utility helicopter fitted with special-mission package.
Bell Helicopter made the first flight of its OH-58 Block II demonstrator at its Xworx research and development facility in Fort Worth on April 14.
Donaldson Aerospace & Defense, a division of Donaldson (Booth No. 4428), has Heli-Expo 2011 as the stage for delivery of its 5,000th inlet barrier filtration system.
The kit, for a Bell 429, will be delivered this month and Donaldson and Bell marked the milestone here at the Donaldson exhibit yesterday with hors d’oeuvres and beverages.
The Australian Army has chosen Sandel Avionics’ four-inch flat-panel primary flight and navigation displays to upgrade its fleet of Bell 206B/OH-58 Kiowa helicopters. Redesign of the legacy OH-58 instrument panel and installation work was accomplished by Sikorsky Helitech in Brisbane, Queensland.
Airwolf Aerospace has developed a new tension-torsion (TT) strap for Bell 206 JetRanger and 206L LongRanger helicopters and military variants, including the OH-58 Kiowa. The straps, manufactured under FAA parts manufacturer approval (PMA) regulations are on display here at the Airwolf booth (No. 3561).
The TT straps anchor each rotor blade to the mast while accommodating the multi-directional forces inherent in rotorcraft flight.
The U.S. Army could issue a formal request for proposal (RFP) early next year for what could become a helicopter armed aerial scout (AAS) program. The AAS–which might encompass at least 300 helicopters–is a potential $5 billion bonanza for the winner and could have significant implications for civil helicopter manufacturers, not just in terms of revenue but also with regard to driving, or not driving, new technologies such as the Sikorsky X2.
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