US Army’s future V-280 Valor tiltrotor conducts initial flight

21 December 2017 (Last Updated January 5th, 2018 07:06)

The US Army’s future V-280 Valor tiltrotor aircraft has successfully conducted its initial flight.

US Army’s future V-280 Valor tiltrotor conducts initial flight
The Bell V-280 has flown for the first time. Credit: PRNewsFoto / Spirit AeroSystems.

The US Army’s future V-280 Valor tiltrotor aircraft has successfully conducted its initial flight.

The V-280 Valor was built by Bell Helicopter under the joint multi-role technology demonstrator (JMR-TD) initiative.

Other companies involved in the V-280 programme include Lockheed Martin, GE, Astronics, and Meggitt and Spirit AeroSystems.

The successful flight enables the company to continue with the development of vertical lift aircraft.

Commanders will be able to self-deploy and perform a variety of vertical lift missions in the Valor. It has been designed to travel at twice the speed of conventional helicopters.

“The Valor represents a transformational aircraft for all the challenging missions our armed forces are asked to undertake.”

Bell V-280 is claimed to provide high-level performance and reliability to give troops a decisive advantage.

Bell Helicopter president and CEO Mitch Snyder said: “The Valor is designed to revolutionise vertical lift for the US Army and represents a transformational aircraft for all the challenging missions our armed forces are asked to undertake.

“The V-280 intends to completely transform what is possible for the military when it comes to battle planning and forward operations.”

The Bell V-280 has an aluminium sub-structure with composite skins. It was built by Spirit AeroSystems at its facility in Wichita, Kansas, US.