Siko­rsky un­veils CH-53K he­li­copter

SP's MAI - - AEROSPACE -

Siko­rsky Air­craft Corp., a sub­sidiary of United Tech­nolo­gies Corp., has un­veiled the CH-53K heavy-lift he­li­copter, the next gen­er­a­tion in the CH-53 type se­ries that the US Ma­rine Corps ex­pects to be­gin op­er­a­tional ser­vice in 2019. Dur­ing the roll­out cer­e­mony, at­tended by mem­bers of Congress, the Depart­ment of De­fense, ma­jor sup­pli­ers to the pro­gramme, in­ter­na­tional guests and com­pany em­ploy­ees, the Com­man­dant of the Ma­rine Corps Gen­eral F. Amos in­tro­duced the name for the new air­craft: the “King Stal­lion.”

“The roll­out of the CH-53K he­li­copter in­tro­duces a new era in Ma­rine Corps avi­a­tion and is an ex­cit­ing mile­stone in our com­pany’s 91 year his­tory,” said Siko­rsky Pres­i­dent Mick Mau­rer. “The CH-53K air- craft will ef­fec­tively triple the ex­ter­nal load car­ry­ing ca­pac­ity of the CH-53E air­craft—to more than 27,000 pounds over a mis­sion ra­dius of 110 nau­ti­cal miles. With its 88,000pound max­i­mum gross weight, pow­er­ful new en­gines, light­weight com­pos­ite struc­ture, new ro­tor blades and fly-by-wire flight con­trols, the CH-53K will have the means to move troops and equip­ment from ship to shore, and to higher al­ti­tude ter­rain, more quickly and ef­fec­tively than ever be­fore.”

The CH-53K is one of the first all-dig­i­tally de­signed he­li­copters. This ap­proach en­abled Siko­rsky to as­sem­ble the air­craft in­side a 3D vir­tual re­al­ity lab at its Strat­ford, Con­necti­cut, head­quar­ters be­fore pro­to­type pro­duc­tion be­gan.

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