We have already presented on several occasions the FLRAA program, for Future Long Range Assault Aircraft, intended to replace the UH-60 Black Hawk maneuvering helicopters of the US Army, and integrated into the umbrella program Futur Vertical Lift, itself one of the pillars of the super program “Big 6”. If we knew that the expected performances, particularly in terms of speed, clearly exceeded the current performances of rotary wings, the American military authorities have now detailed their ambitions in a more precise manner , and the least that can be said is that the term “ambition” is not usurped!
Today, a maneuvering helicopter, whose primary function is the transport of armed soldiers for airborne assault missions, operates between 260 and 280 km/h, with a top speed rarely exceeding 300 km/h. The new US Army aircraft will have to maintain a cruising speed of 280 knots, or almost 520 km/h. Note that this speed is higher than that of many transport aircraft equipped with turboprop engines, such as the CN-235 whose cruising speed is 250 knots (450 km/h).
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