Jay Macklin, business development director for Sikorsky Army Programs and Innovations, said the company’s Raider X aircraft prototype, which now comes with modular weapon launchers equipped with a 20mm main gun and Hellfire missiles, is about 90 percent complete at a flight test facility in West Palm Beach, California.
“Our acceptance test procedures are more than 50 percent complete,” said Macklin, who added that the company and the Army are working closely on the whole build.
Sikorsky’s offering is a coaxial helicopter based on its S-97 Raider attack helicopter and X2 technology.
“The majority of the subsystems are installed on the aircraft and undergoing functionality testing,” said Pete Germanowski, Sikorsky’s chief FARA engineer. “A second fuselage is being built at a separate Sikorsky facility on Long Island, New York. That airframe should be loaded into a test frame in July and will undergo structural load testing.”
Germanowski noted that the company will use the collected testing data to assess whether to approve Raider X for flight.
The service will evaluate Raider X and Bell’s 360 Invictus rotorcraft prototype at a series of flight tests slated to occur in the fall of 2023.