SB-1 Defiant coaxial demonstrator aircraft hits 230 knots

SB-1 Defiant coaxial demonstrator aircraft hits 230 knots

The Sikorsky–Boeing SB-1 Defiant is the Sikorsky Aircraft and Boeing entry for the United States Army’s Future Vertical Lift program.

The Sikorsky-Boeing developed SB-1 Defiant coaxial demonstrator aircraft hit 232 knots in a descent and 211 knots in straight and level flight, which meets the Army’s speed requirements for its Future Long Range Assault Aircraft it plans to field by 2030.

In the Oct. 12 flight, the aircraft was using about two-thirds prop torque and engine power to achieve the speeds.

“We are excited about the results we are seeing and what the future holds for our ability to bring this capability to the warfighter,” the Sikorsky-Boeing team said in a statement to Defense News.

The team continues to “make great progress as we advance Defiant’s rigorous flight test program,” the statement said. “With every flight, as we continue to increase Defiant’s speed, angle of bank and rate of climb, we are gathering important data, expanding our speed and maneuverability envelope and validating our modeling and simulation tools.”

Defiant was close to hitting the 230-knot goal in June when it reached a speed of 205 knots. The demonstrator hit 100 knots in January.

While the Army, this month, passed through the Army Requirements Oversight Council’s gauntlet and received preliminary approval of its abbreviated capabilities development document, bringing the aircraft a step closer to competitive procurement. Sikorsky and Bell are also competing to build Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft prototypes which will result in one being chosen to build production aircraft for the service.

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