The U.S. Army has picked five companies to take the next step in its Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft Competitive Prototype (FARA CP) program, which will provide the service with a new armed scout aircraft.
An AVX Aircraft Company/L-3 Communications team, Bell, Boeing, Karem, and Sikorsky all received Other Transaction Authority (OTA) for Prototype Agreements from the Army for the design, build and testing of their FARA proposals. Not all the contenders have publicly disclosed their offerings, but AVX and L3 revealed their proposal for the FARA CP program on April 15. Their aircraft utilizes a compound coaxial helicopter desigwith two-ducted fans.
According to Scott Donnelly, the CEO of Textron, Bell’s parent company, the manufacturer has offered a derivative of its 525 Relentless, “scaling down” the technology it has validated for the super medium program.
Finally, Sikorsky has highlighted the suitability of its X2 technology, currently being matured in its S-97 Raider, for the armed reconnaissance mission.The Raider, which resumed flight tests in June last year after the hard landing of the first prototype the previous August, features a rigid coaxial main rotors and a variable-pitch pusher propeller (which enhance both the aircraft’s speed and its maneuverability).
Airbus Helicopters, which proposed an offshoot from its X3 hybrid demonstrator programand MD Helicopters, which revealed the development of a NOTAR-equipped aircraftt for FARA CP at HAI Heli-Expo in March, have both missed out.
The contract awards came two months ahead of schedule, in what was already an extremely streamlined development timeline.
The FARA program picks up the baton from the Armed Aerial Scout program that fell victim to sequestration budget cuts in 2013, and will provide a replacement for the Army’s recently-retired fleet of Bell OH-58D Kiowa Warriors. The Army has been using Boeing AH-64E Apaches as an interim “replacement” in combination with UAVs since phasing out use of the OH-58Ds in 2014.
Never heard of Karem, but I have strong faith in Boeing, Bell and Sikorsky to provide what the army is in search for :)
Karen is involved in UAV systems. Some of their work is the Amber, General Atomics GNAT and the A160 Hummingbird they’re also working with Uber to build an air taxi
Sad the Airbus missed out. I liked that helicopter.
I’ve flown a simulator of the one pictured above, it was alright, flew good, but they didn’t really let me do much…
Airbus is a French company so the U.S. Army will only pick U.S. companies.
Not exactly the case. As far as I remember Airbus given their already global supply chain offer in the bids work arounds to ensure American jobs are created. This was the case with the Tanker bid, they would have made them in the US. I do agree though that the US will always keep this in mind though and choose the US company regardless of the extra costs incurred on taxpayers.
Not true at all look at the UH72 that’s Airbus
I’m sorry I should have reworded that the U.S. pick mostly U.S. companies to work on their aircraft etc. For AF1 I think that’s why they aren’t picking to go with the a380 and going with the 747.
The 380 also can’t get into airports where the 747 can
Airbus never put in a bid for Air Force One. Unlike other contracts this one would require the aircraft to be built in the US which was not at all feasible for Airbus. Boeing was their only option.
Actually the US government asked both however is they picked airbus it would be a huge slap in the face to Boeing and would likely ruin the relationship between them (or damage it in some way).
Source? Considering the A380 can’t be made in the US it seems unlikely
EADS North America represented EADS Airbus Division and confirmed they would not respond. This implies Airbus was asked to provide a solution to the request but denied. Later it states assembling 3 planes in the US did not make financial sense, implying it was possibly but not financially right.
Sorry to be that guy but this is turning extremely off topic
That’s exactly what I said, Airbus never bid for the contract as it wasn’t feasible…
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