S-97 Raider is unlike any other helicopter you have ever seen; it’s black and sleek and goes like a bat.
Helicopters are amazing, but they have one serious problem. They are very slow and that makes them a very easy target for their enemies. But not anymore since the new S-97 Raider eradicates this problem. It is a helicopter for sure, but a helicopter that has the ability to move like a bat.
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Modern helicopters are equipped with basic features such as a main rotor on top, a fuselage and a tail rotor. You can do many things with these helicopters, including coming down vertically, lifting off and hovering in one place, but there are limitations when it comes to speed.
Until now Westland Lynx was considered to be the fastest helicopter in the world with the ability to go up to 248 mph. The irony is you can buy a car made by Volkswagen that will move faster than Westland Lynx.
For the past few years, aircraft manufacturers have been spending millions of dollars on experimenting with different designs that have the knack to overcome the orthodox law of helicopter physics.
The first experiment that was able to circumvent this problem failed due to some other serious issues. S-97 Raider was the second design and also a successful one as far as overcoming the problem of speed was concerned. It was launched today in Florida at “Innovations Center” by Sikorsky.
The S-97 Raider takes a different and unique approach in order to maintain its speed and balance in the air. It has two main rotors instead of one and these rotors are stacked on top of each other and they rotate in opposite directions. To provide sheaves of forward thrust there is a huge pusher propeller at the back of the Raider.
Due to this mechanism the S-97 Raider has the ability to go up to 270 mph. The Army is already looking for an OH-58 replacement despite the fact that it performed well in the war again Afghanistan and Iraq. This can be a chance for the S-97 raider to shine out and be the replacement for the OH-58.
“When Sikorsky launched the RAIDER program four years ago, it issued a challenge to industry experts to join us on a mission to develop and produce an aircraft with revolutionary capabilities that are above and beyond existing technologies. Aurora Flight Sciences accepted that challenge as one of 53 critical partners on this program, and has delivered on its promise to support the mission. Today, we stand as a solid industry team introducing the next generation of military aircraft,” said Mark Miller, Vice President of Sikorsky Research and Engineering.
“The S-97 helicopter will prove to be an important turning point in helicopter history,” said Aurora CEO John Langford. “Being able to fly twice as fast as any other production helicopter will make the S-97 RAIDER a point of departure for a whole new family of flying machines – starting with the Army’s Armed Aerial Scout. We look forward to supporting Sikorsky by building hundreds more of these.”
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