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FARA fly-off on track but only if T901 engine tests keep pace

4th March 2022 - 09:56 GMT | by Tim Martin in Belfast

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A 3D-printed model of the GE T901 engine installed on a UH-60M Black Hawk during a fit check. (Photo: US Army)

As General Electric prepares to test imminently a fully assembled T901 engine for the first time, the US Army will monitor developments closely as it sticks to a plan of holding a Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft (FARA) fly-off in 2023.

A 2023 target may be delayed for competitor helicopters involved in the US Army’s Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft (FARA) programme to take part in a fly-off to determine which will go on to enter production, if General Electric’s (GE’s) T901 engine testing and development activities veer off course.

Looked upon as the ‘pacing item’ to reaching the fly-off phase, the T901 effort, which falls under the Improved Turbine Engine Program (ITEP), has suffered from COVID-19 supply chain-related issues and will belatedly meet a First Engine To Test (FETT) milestone in March 2022.

‘As we wanted to fly FARA as rapidly as

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