Tests continue for SB-1 Defiant helicopter for United States Army's Future Vertical Lift program

Testing Sikorsky–Boeing continues for the SB-1 Defiant of United States Army's Future Vertical Lift program, expanding the flight envelope and demonstrating low altitude maneuverability. These capabilities are crucial for the US Army future long-range assault mission. A new video was released on the Twitter account of Sikorsky on May 12, 2020.

Follow Air Recognition on Google News at this link

Tests continue for SB 1 Defiant helicopter for United States Armys Future Vertical Lift program 925 002 Tests continue for the SB-1 Defiant of United States Army's Future Vertical Lift program. (Picture source Sikorsky–Boeing print screen video footage)

The SB-1 Defiant is participating in the Army's Joint Multi-Role-Medium Technology Demonstrator program. Data from DEFIANT will help the Army develop requirements for new utility helicopters expected to enter service in the early 2030s. This flight marks a key milestone for the Sikorsky-Boeing team and is the culmination of significant design, simulation, and test activity to further demonstrate the capability of the X2 Technology.

The Sikorsky–Boeing SB-1 Defiant is a new generation of multi-role helicopters made with a fuselage using composite materials and equipped with counter-rotating coaxial main rotors. Each rotor of the twin co-axial rotor system will revolve in the opposite direction and will reduce the net torque of the other rotor in real-time.

Sikorsky Aircraft and Boeing are jointly producing a medium-lift-sized demonstrator they call SB-1 Defiant for phase one of the program. Originally planned to fly in late 2017, its first flight was delayed in April 2017 to early 2018. Sikorsky is leading the development of phase one with an aircraft based on their previous Sikorsky X2 design.

The first prototype was unveiled in December 2018, and the first flight was pushed to sometime in early 2019. Ground runs began in January 2019; 15 hours of ground tests were needed before the first flight. The first flight took place on 21 March 2019 at Sikorsky West Palm Beach site in Florida. In the summer of 2019, flights were suspended to address a bearing issue with the main rotor. Flight testing resumed 24 September 2019.

With its two coaxial main rotors and rear-mounted pusher propulsor, DEFIANT is unlike production rotorcraft available today. It represents a leap forward in technology to achieve the U.S. government's desire for vast increases in speed and range, while improving maneuverability and survivability in a cost-effective way. DEFIANT aircraft's use of X2™ Technology will allow the Army to penetrate from strategic standoff and exploit gaps created in complex Anti-Access Area Denial systems against near-peer adversaries.