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Tue, Mar 15, 2016

U.S. Army Will Consider FVL-Light Program Acceleration

Kiowa Warrior Nearing Retirement

A U.S. Army acquisition and logistics official says that the Army will be accelerating its Future Vertical Lift-Light (FVL-Light) program because it is potentially more achievable in the near term.

The remarks came from Lt Gen Michael Williamson at a conference on FY 2017 defense programs in Washington, D.C. last week. “I think what you’ll find is there’s still a requirement for us to have a light reconnaissance helicopter, so as we looked at the dollars that are available and the timing to get to a platform, we saw the light helicopter probably gave us the most in terms of schedule,” he said at the conference.

Flightglobal reports that two recent industry surveys found that the FVL-Light aircraft would fill a void left by the retirement of the Bell Kiowa Warrior helicopter.

Sikorsky said that if an acquisition goes forward, it will offer a version of its S-97 Raider aircraft currently in development.

An RFI issued by the Army said that the light attack/assault rotorcraft would be required to carry at least six heavily-armed troops 229 nm at 200 knots. It would be operational in the 2030s.

The Army has cut funding for helicopter procurement in the 2017 budget.

(Kiowa Warrior pictured in file photo)

FMI: www.army.mil

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