Privately held Lord Corporation is one of more than 30 contractors chosen by Sikorsky Aircraft to participate in the building of a new attack helicopter for the U.S. military.
Called the Raider, the S-97 would have twice the speed of conventional helicopters at 287 miles per hour, Sikorsky says.
The design includes twin rotors – one on top of the other, or coaxial, with each rotating in opposite direction – and a pusher propeller.
Lord, a global high-tech manufacturing firm, will provide its Active Vibration Control System and specific types of bearings called elastomeric, the Cary firm says.
Sikorsky plans to build two prototypes and fly them in 2014 for evaluation by the military. In 2010 it built a demonstration aircraft using the propulsion technology that produced the 287-mph speed.
The Raider helicopter
Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
“LORD joined the S-97 RAIDER helicopter team because of our leadership and expertise in vibration control systems and our overall drive for innovation,” said Joe Marotta, president of Americas for Lord. “We look forward to delivering game changing technology to this ground-breaking platform.”
Sikorsky is funding the program, the defense contractor said.
“As designer and integrator of a next-generation light tactical helicopter capable of outperforming conventional helicopters in almost every performance parameter, it was imperative we chose our suppliers for the maturity of their advanced aerospace products and technologies,” said Doug Shidler, Sikorsky’s Raider program manager, in a statement.
“Product maturity will enable Sikorsky to demonstrate the Raider helicopter’s flight and aerodynamic performance in a simulated military environment starting in 2014, and ultimately bring X2-designed helicopters to future customers quickly and at a very affordable price,” he added.
The Army is seeking a replacement for its OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopters.
Get the latest news alerts: Follow WRAL Tech Wire at Twitter.