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Breaking Defense

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V-280 Valor

4 Flights, 3 Hours, 20 Knots: Boeing’s Defiant Inches Ahead

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


Mechanical fixes kept the SB>1 compound helicopter grounded for weeks this summer, but Sikorsky insists they can catch up.

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V-280 Passes Key Agility Test: Bell

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


Critics have argued the tiltrotor aircraft could never be as nimble at low speed and low altitude as a helicopter. Bell says it’s proven them wrong.

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How To Make Sure The Army’s Big Six Get Built

Posted by James Tinsley on


If the Army wants to get its Big Six right, it must talk, and talk and talk with Congress and the press and industry. And be ready to drop failures.

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Baby Steps For Defiant As Army Accelerates FVL

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


The Sikorsky-Boeing super-copter has just over an hour of flight time, but the Army says it has all the data it needs to accelerate the program. How?

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300, 200, 100: V-280 Valor’s Latest Milestones

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


Bell’s prototype tiltrotor keeps pulling ahead of rivals — but the race to replace the UH-60 Black Hawk is far from over.

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SB>1 Revs Up In Ground Test: Expert Expects First Flight ‘In Weeks’

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


“Now that they’ve completed the initial ground run, the team can finish its work to clear the aircraft for first flight,” said Mike Hirschberg, executive director of the Vertical Flight Society. “Assuming the Defiant team doesn’t find anything noteworthy from its ground testing, it should be up in the air in the next few weeks.”

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Bell V-280 Flies 322 MPH: Army Secretary Praises Program

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


“Our new approach is really to prototype as much as we can to help us identify requirements, so our reach doesn’t exceed our grasp,” Secretary Esper said. “A good example is Future Vertical Lift: The prototyping has been exceptional.”

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Bell V-280 Valor: Anniversary Tour?

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


“We … are looking at opportunities to do a road trip,” Bell executive Keith Flail told me. “Can we take the V-280 to a handful of key Army and Marine Corps installations to show capabilities to the force?”

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Inside The Bell V-280 Valor At AUSA

Posted by Colin Clark on


Colin Clark climbs in and out of the V-280 at the Association of the US Army show, from cockpit to troop compartment, and gets a thorough briefing from Bell on what they’ve building, from engineering refined by a decade’s experience with the V-22 Osprey to sensor technology derived from the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter — except upgraded.

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SB>1 Defiant Will Be Worth The Wait: Sikorsky & Boeing

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


Sikorsky and Boeing are saying that their aircraft is taking longer than Bell’s because their design is more inventive — harder, riskier, and more time-consuming, yes, but ultimately better. In particular, while the SB>1 looks like it’ll be a little slower than the V-280, going by the companies’ projections for top speed, Sikorsky and Boeing say their machine will be much more maneuverable.

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