Sikorsky S-97 Raider
Military aviation
Sikorsky S 97 Raider

Helicopter Sikorsky S-97 Raider. Photo. Characteristics.


Bell OH-58 Kiowa Light multipurpose helicopter, has been in the service of the US Army since 1969 as a reconnaissance and close fire support helicopter.

Despite numerous upgrades, it has long been clear to everyone that the OH-58 has exhausted itself as a construction. The AH-64 upgrade options are also running out. In the US Army helicopters, two spaces appeared, two free niches. The successful design of the S-97, a confluence of circumstances, and simple luck, will allow the new helicopter to fill two empty niches at once. What is this miracle? With coaxial rotors and pusher propeller? 

Sikorsky S-97 Raider 34

In 2008, an experimental Sikorsky X2 was built to test technical improvements and flight tests of new products. During the flight tests, the designers faced a number of serious problems. There was an acute problem with increasing flight speed. The fact is that when the propeller rotates, the retreating blade moving along the flight has a speed close to the speed of the air flow. Thus, it runs idle, that is, it does not create lift.

Sikorsky engineers found a way out of this situation in the early 1970s. The two coaxial rotors have two independent swash plates. Automata regulate the drop in lift by changing the angle of attack of the retreating blades. All lift is generated by the leading blades. For the first time on the X2 model, not a pushing turbojet engine (or a pair of them) was used, but a pushing propeller. This gave a sharp increase in speed (in the mid-70s, an unofficial world helicopter speed record of 69 km / h was set on the S-487). In October 2008, the concept was returned to and flight testing of the X 2 continued. The second major problem of the helicopter blades was also solved. With increasing rotor speed, the movement of the blade tips approaches the speed of sound. Air resistance increases abruptly. The problem was solved thanks to the push screw.

Sikorsky S-97 Raider missiles

At a certain point the speed of rotation of the supporting rotors slows down. The lifting force remains quite enough, the blade tips do not go into critical modes, and the forward speed depends entirely on the pusher propeller. So the speed of the new S-97 Raider helicopter went beyond the 400 km / h line. Although the engine and aerodynamics allows you to accelerate the car to speeds above 500 km / h! The six-bladed pushing propeller has the ability to change pitch, which allows you to optimize and control the flight of the helicopter. The usual problem of helicopters is vibration, decided by an active vibration control system. The system includes measuring vibration frequency sensors and generators that suppress opposing vibration of a strictly defined frequency at various points of the fuselage. This allows you to make the flight comfortable for the crew and landing force. The power unit on the new helicopter is one and borrowed from the UH-60M Black Hawk. The General Electric YT706 engine, with gearboxes and transmissions, drives both the supporting rotors and the pusher propeller. Soon the raider will get its own engine, and its cruising speed will be even greater. 

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The crew of the car consists of two pilots, the cargo and passenger compartment in the assault configuration accommodates 6 fully equipped infantrymen. The compartment can be transformed to a specific task. That is, it is universal. Transport, medical, assault - far from a complete list of modifications of the compartment. The helicopter has a fully electro-remote control system. There are no mechanical connections in management at all. This allowed to significantly reduce the mass of the helicopter and reduce its size. The compactness of the helicopter is another advantage over its competitors. The length of 11 m and the diameter of the rotor 10m allows to reduce the size of the site when landing at 15%, which is extremely important for rescue and combat operations. S-97 has a standard "body kit" consisting of a variety of combinations of machine guns 7, 62 or 12, 5 mm, 7 missile system Mk 4 FFAR (2, 75 in.), Or AGM-114 Hellfire installation.

In 2015 it planned to leave only the Apaches in the army, removing them from the national reserve and National Guard. So S-97 goes directly to two goals. Completely replaces the OH-58 and partly AH-64.

Helicopter project Sykorsky S-97 is also unique in that it is entirely built on private investment, a fully private company, without government funding.

Sikorsky S-97 Raider 3434

S-97 entirely appropriate for the replacement helicopter fleet US FVL Future Vertical Lift, unlike its competitors Bell V-280 Valor and SB-1 Defiant (joint Sikorsky and Boeing), whose first flight is scheduled only 2017 year. Both helicopters are to replace Apache, and in niche multi-Raider has no equal, not even a competition was announced.

So: S-97 Raider-speed, multi-function, the helicopter of the new generation, meanwhile, has no competitors in the world. Terrible and dangerous machine. Who will answer the call?


Sikorsky company introduced the first of the two prototypes of the helicopter Sikorsky S-97 Raider, designed for reconnaissance and combat operations, the exhibition held in October 2 2014, in West Palm Beach, Florida.
The program to create a combat helicopter, being developed by Sikorsky specifically for the US Army.


Sikorsky S 97 Raider

Sikorsky S 97 Raider photo


Development Programme and the development of a new type of helicopter

The program is developing a model of a new type of helicopter, it was launched in March 2010 years. There was a need to replace the standing armed helicopter Bell OH-58D Riowa Warrior, to a new and improved model. Sikorsky company decided to develop a new helicopter with the launch of the first model in October 2014 years. Prototypes prototypes began to gather in October 2012 2, in the amount of units. When you create a helicopter used the most advanced technology, including the creation of a fuselage made of composite materials.


Sikorsky S 97 Raider poster

Sikorsky S 97 Raider poster

Sikorsky has partnered with Boeing to develop a new high-speed rigid rotor SB> 1 (JMR TD) coaxial model.

In the case of adoption of a new model helicopter to the US Army, will be replaced model helicopters UH-60 Black Hawk and AH-64 Apache with total funding of 100 billion. Dollars.


Sikorsky S 97 Raider photos back

Sikorsky S 97 Raider photo

The first prototype should be ready at the end of the year 2014, and is used for intensive test flights, after the second copy in the water in the system, is intended to participate in the demonstration flights. The creation of the helicopter company Sikorsky has invested 150 million. Dollars, plus 200 million. Dollars invested in the form of the suppliers of parts and components of the helicopter. The estimated selling price of the helicopter will be 15 million. Dollars.


Sikorsky S 97 Raider photo

Sikorsky S 97 Raider photo

The US Defense Department has not yet made a final decision on the re-transition to new models of helicopters. In parallel with the military version of the helicopter developed a civilian version, which is expected to produce for delivery personnel on oil platforms.


The design features of the new helicopter

The new model of Sikorsky S-97 Raider has the characteristics of the power unit with variable speed coaxial rotors and variable pitch rotation. It is planned to produce controlled model helicopter or 1 2 pilots, as well as with automatic piloting.


Possibilities of use and specifications of the helicopter:

  • The helicopter crew consists of 1-2 pilots or controlled automatic piloting.

  • The passenger cabin is designed to carry passengers 6.

  • Dimensions helicopter length 11 m.

  • Maximum take-off weight - 4990 kg.

  • The power plant will consist of 1 engine General Electric YT706, 1900 kW capacity.

  • Main rotor diameter -10 m.

  • Rotors - 6 blade variable-pitch pusher propeller and clutchable 2.1 m in diameter.

  • Cruising speed - 407 km / h

  • Flight range - 570 km

  • The residence time in flight - 2 40 hours minutes

  • The maximum ceiling - 3048 m.


Sikorsky S 97 Raider photo 123

Sikorsky S 97 Raider photo



  • 1 50-caliber machine gun and rockets 7.



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