At the Bell Helicopter research center in Amarillo, rotors for the new Bell V-280 Valor tiltrotor were tested at full power for the first time. Compared to the power plant of its predecessor, the V-22 Osprey, here the engines are moved outside the rotor nacelles, which makes it possible to rotate the propellers from only one motor in a critical situation.
The V-280 tiltrotor is the ideological successor to the V-22 model. The military traditionally asked for more speed, armor and carrying capacity, which was achieved by making almost all the nodes from composite materials. The fuselage, wings, tail - all use sandwich panels made of coarse-mesh carbon elements with integrated armor. It is 30% lighter than the previous version.
The future tiltrotor will be able to fly at a cruising speed of 520 km / h, with a maximum load of 5400 kg for a range of up to 1480 km. The data on the maximum performance is classified, but it is known that the US Army required aeronautical engineers to double the speed and range compared to the old Osprey. Another property of the new tiltrotor is the ability to hover like a helicopter at an altitude of up to 1800 m.
Valor will be able to transport 14 troops, plus two crew members. Two wide side doors are provided for quick disembarkation. The tiltrotor received a triple control dubbing system, which also takes into account such data as the operational situation around, so as not to start the car inadvertently in the wrong direction. Valor's maiden flight may take place this fall.