Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation recently announced an agreement with the US Army Aviation Applied Technology Directorate to develop a new, integrated solution to enhance the durability and capabilities of helicopter rotor blades.
Under the $11.4m, 42-month program, Sikorsky will research and provide a solution that increases rotor blade life in erosive environments, provides a reliable and maintainable ice protection system, and includes an improved methodology for assessing and repairing battle damage.
Sikorsky believes the program could yield significant cost savings too.
Sikorsky has teamed with the United Technologies Research Center (UTRC) to investigate potential solutions for increasing blade erosion resistance. Other team members include BAE Systems, SANOVA, Ross Technology Corporation, South West Research Institute, Integran, Engineering Consulting Services, and the US Army Research Laboratory.
Most of the work will take place at Sikorsky’s headquarters with support at UTRC’s test facility in