15:01 GMT24 October 2020
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    Bell Helicopter's V-280 Valor tilt-rotor aircraft’s test flight has been a big step ahead in the development of the next generation of vertical lift aircraft for the US military, the company said in a statement posed on its website.

    Bell Helicopter has released a video showing the maiden flight performed by its new tilt-rotor aircraft.

    The V-280, designed to fly twice as fast as conventional helicopters, was developed as part of the Future Vertical Lift (FVL) program to create a new generation of tilt-rotor airframes.

    The FVL program envisions the creation of five types of vertical liftoff aircraft to replace the existing fleet of Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk, AH-64 Apache and CH-47 Chinook rotorcraft.

    All future helicopters will be equipped with similar onboard electronics, engines and weapons systems.

    The prototype of the V-280 was presented to US Army officials in 2014.

    Designers have sought to keep production costs down through a 30 percent improvement in weight savings and by eliminating the original “folded-wing” configuration.

    The Valor carries a crew of two and can carry 14 troops or a payload topping 5.4 tons.

    It has a cruising speed of 320 miles an hour, a combat range of up to 920 miles and can hover out of ground effect at 6,000 feet.

    "This is an exciting time for Bell Helicopter, and I could not be more proud of the progress we have made with the first flight of the Bell V-280," Bell helicopter CEO Mitch Snyder said.

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    Tags:
    maden flight, tilt-rotorcraft, low cost, engines, electronics, V-280 Valor, CH-47 Chinook, AH-64 Apache, Bell Helicopter, US
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