The European super-speed Racer helicopter demonstrator will be flying by the end of the year!

Among the many lessons that emerged from the Ukraine war, the vulnerability of combat helicopters was particularly highlighted, to the point that despite obvious material superiority in this area, Russian air combat capabilities were largely under-exploited after the disaster of the attack on Hostomel airport. Because of their low speed, the Russian aircraft were easily targeted by Ukrainian anti-aircraft systems, and in particular MANPADS infantry missiles. In addition, the destruction on the ground of nearly 40 aircraft on the Kherson base by artillery strikes also highlighted the obligation to deploy these aircraft to…

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SMX31, Racer, Scarabée: These ultra-innovative unfunded French defense industrial programs

In the field of the defense industry, France has often demonstrated its ability to develop high-performance equipment that is sometimes several years ahead of its international competitors. But if certain successes are undeniable, as were the Light Stealth Frigates or the VAB armored vehicles, both ahead of the very perception of the need when they appeared, it has also happened, very often, that very efficient programs and in ahead of their time were ignored by the French authorities, letting slip crucial technological assets which certain competitors did not fail to seize. This is how France passed by...

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Airbus wants to join forces with Leonardo to deal with new generation American helicopters

The US Army Future Vertical Lift program, one of the components of the BIG-6 super-program, will undoubtedly profoundly change the technological characteristics of helicopters in the decades to come, and above all the expected performance, as well in terms of speed than distance covered or carrying capacity. For the time being, FVL consists of the Futur Long Range Assault Aircraft, or FLRAA, program intended to replace the H-60 ​​Black Hawks, as well as the Futur Attack and Reconnaissance Aircraft, or FARA, program to re-capitalize the component of attack and reconnaissance that the US Army lost with the withdrawal of the OH-58 Kiowa. And whether it's the...

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5 European countries join forces to design the next medium multi-role helicopter

European helicopters are, unquestionably, among the best rotary wings in the world, and have been for several decades. Over the course of industrial concentrations and consolidation of activity, two major European groups have emerged in this field, the Franco-German Airbus Hélicoptères and the Italian-British Agusta-Westland. Is it to respond to the emergence of new technologies such as those implemented in the United States as part of the US Army's Future Vertical Lift program? or the upcoming arrival of China and its Z-20 on the international market? anyway, these 4 countries are home to European helicopters, Germany, France, Italy and the United Kingdom, joined in this by…

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By ignoring the Airbus Helicopters RACER, Europeans could miss the next technological leap in air combat

The Airbus Helicopters RACER is a rapid and economical helicopter demonstrator (Rapid And Cost-Effective Rotorcraft) supported by the European Clean Sky project. It is also on the Clean Sky website that an inventory of the RACER program was published on March 20th. It would thus seem that the development of the first demonstrator is encountering two major technical difficulties, but that the schedule for the program as a whole should not be upset. Final adjustments before the start of testing The two elements affected by significant design delays are the main gearbox and the side shaft lines. Concretely, the delay accumulates…

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20 programs to strengthen the armies and preserve the French industrial fabric

Between the health and economic crisis linked to the Covid19 virus, and the security crises that are shaking the Middle East, the Mediterranean, Asia and Eastern Europe, there is no shortage of subjects of concern for French political leaders in in charge of defence, public finance and industry. But while these files are managed in isolation today, a global vision would make it possible to consider solutions that meet all the needs and contextual requirements. Strengthening the French armies, a pressing need Although the Military Programming Law 2019-2025 has undeniably made it possible to stem the loss of capacity that has affected the French armies for more than…

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While waiting for FARA, the US Army orders new UH-72 Lakota light helicopters.

Official American sources inform us today that a contract of approximately 120 million dollars had been awarded to Airbus Helicopters USA for the construction of 15 new UH-72A Lakota, a version built under license of the light twin-turbine helicopter H145. These 15 new aircraft will be added to some 412 UH-72 Lakota already produced in Colombus (Mississippi) for the needs of the US Army, which is today the main world operator of EC145/H145 family helicopters. Although it is reserved for utilitarian tasks and almost never deployed outside American territory (with the exception of a few MEDEVAC exercises in Germany, in particular), the UH-72 is today at the heart of capabilities…

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The future American reconnaissance and attack helicopter is among these 5 models

In 1982, in the midst of the Cold War, the Pentagon decided to launch the design of a new light reconnaissance and attack helicopter intended to replace the US Army's OH-58 Kiowa, but also the Marines' AH-1 Cobra Bodies, and number of armed UH-1 Hueys, equipping the 3 armies. This was the RAH-66 Comanche program entrusted to Boeing and Sikorsky. Initially planned to be produced in 6000 copies, this revolutionary and stealthy device saw its target shrink to a trickle with the collapse of the Soviet bloc, to finally aim for only 600 copies at the start of 2000. Delays, technological impasses and ambitions excessive finally had…

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France should finally receive Chinook heavy helicopters

This is news that we no longer hoped for, even if the ground had recently been prepared for such an announcement: France should finally equip itself with CH-47 Chinook heavy transport helicopters. The latter would be operated by the Air Force and not by the Army, the latter having in fact recently rejected such an opportunity by the voice of General Bertrand Vallette d'Osia, the boss of ALAT ( Army Light Aviation). Initially, according to FlightGlobal which revealed the news, two Chinook CH-47F could be rented by the Air Force, allowing both to meet certain urgent needs in…

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