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Modernised S-61T helicopter takes flight

7th January 2014 - 16:24 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Sikorsky’s modernised S-61T helicopter has successfully completed its maiden test flight, marking an important milestone in the company’s programme to update the S-61 aircraft to meet evolving requirements.

Sikorsky is under contract to the US Department of State (DoS) to refurbish its S-61 helicopters and deliver 13 S-61T aircraft. Sixteen refurbished S-61 helicopters have been delivered to the DoS under the programme, and the first S-61T delivery is scheduled for the first quarter of 2014.

Steven Rogers, director, S-61 programs, said: ‘The first flight of the S-61T represents a major milestone in the programme. The modernised S-61T helicopter can be outfitted to meet a wide variety of requirements, and we believe it provides best-in-class-value for a mid-size, multi-mission helicopter.’

The S-61T has been designed with an integrated glass cockpit and enhanced performance capabilities. It has undergone a full structural refurbishment, overhaul of all major dynamic components, and installation of key upgrades including new composite main rotor blades (CMRB) and survivability suite, as well as all new electrical wiring throughout the aircraft. The aircraft’s initial test flight was completed in late 2013.

Sikorsky’s five-year IDIQ agreement with DoS allows for the purchase of up to 110 modernised S-61 aircraft.

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