Saturday, September 30, 2017

Bell wants Army to skip upgrades go straight to its V-280 tiltrotor...

via Breaking Defense.
 Bell Helicopter is so confident in their new V-280 tilt-rotor prototype that they want the Pentagon to accelerate the Future Vertical Lift program – which they think the V-280 will win – by “five to eight years.”

That would pull production of the first FVL variant, a faster and longer-ranged replacement for Army UH-60s and Marine UH-1s, from the 2030s to as early as 2025. To pay for the earlier start, Bell program manager Chris Gehler told reporters here yesterday, the Army should cancel its $10 billion Improved Turbine Engine Program (ITEP), which aims to boost existing helicopters’ power by 50 percent and reallocate the money to the all-new FVL.

Money will be tight in the 2020s, even after the Budget Control Act caps expire, because the Pentagon has pushed back many expensive modernization programs whose bills will be finally coming due, what insiders call a bow wave. That includes replacing all three legs of the aging nuclear triad with new weapons systems – the Air Force’s B-21 stealth bomber, the Navy’s Columbia missile submarine, and the Air Force’s new ICBM – as well as full-rate production of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
Story here. 

I like the V-280.  If they have actually cracked the tilt wing code and it delivers as promised then it will be a tremendous asset.  Saying all that though this is nothing but corporate propaganda.

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