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Sikorsky's x2 is unofficially the fastest helicopter


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im not sure if this was posted it happened a week ago but I just saw this news article and thought to post it.

 

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp.'s X2 Technology demonstrator broke the rotorcraft speed record Monday.

 

The helicopter reached a top speed of 225 knots in a one-hour test flight at the Development Flight Center, in West Palm Beach, Fla. A Westland Lynx set the previous record of 216 knots for a 3,500 kg class of rotorcraft in the 1980s.

 

"The X2 Technology demonstrator's latest flight is continuing to push the speed envelope, successfully flying approximately 50 knots faster than a traditional helicopter," Jim Kagdis, Sikorsky's manager of Advanced Programs, said in a news release. "Vibration levels and aircraft performance have continued to meet or exceed our expectations, so we are pleased to report that all systems are 'go' in our mission to achieve a 250-knot cruise speed later this year."

 

The X2 is designed to demonstrate that a helicopter can cruise comfortably at 250 knots without sacrificing excellent low-speed handling, efficient hovering and a seamless and simple transition to high speed, according to Sikorsky. It includes fly-by-wire flight controls, counter-rotating rigid rotor blades, hub drag reduction, active vibration control and an integrated auxiliary propulsion system.

 

article is here http://blog.seattlepi.com/aerospace/archives/215811.asp

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I am glad to see they are making good progress with this aircraft. They say they are shooting for a 250kt cruise speed, I'd love to see it top out faster than that.

 

It will have to top out faster if they want the cruise to be 250! My guess is they will do 275, maybe even shoot for 300.

 

The exciting part of this technology is it is DESIGNED to cruise at 250, the Lynx I think was probably pushing its design limits to hit 216..

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