Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. company, today announced the delivery of a High-Speed Vertical Takeoff and Landing (HSVTOL) test article to Holloman Air Force Base for demonstration and technology evaluation. The team will leverage the Arnold Engineering Development Complex Holloman High Speed Test Track to test the folding rotor, integrated propulsion and flight control technologies at representative flight speeds. The objective of Bell’s sled test operations is to validate key technologies through a full-scale, integrated demonstration in a representative operating environment. Bell plans for the test article to execute a series of HSVTOL high-speed transition maneuvers, a first of its kind capability for vertical lift aircraft.
“The HSVTOL test article delivery and start of sled testing operations serves as a major milestone in our mission to develop the next generation of high-speed vertical lift aircraft. Bell plans to showcase HSVTOL technology informed by more than 85 years of high-speed rotorcraft development and leverage lessons learned to produce a flying prototype with game-changing capabilities,” said Jason Hurst, executive vice president, Engineering, Bell.
Prior to delivery at Holloman Air Force Base, Bell successfully completed functional demonstrations at Bell’s Flight Research Center. Bell’s High-Speed Vertical Takeoff and Landing (HSVTOL) technology blends the hover capability of a helicopter with the speed (400+ kts), range, and survivability of jet aircraft. Bell has developed high-speed vertical lift technology for more than 85 years, pioneering innovative VTOL configurations like the X-14, X-22, XV-3 and XV-15 for NASA, the U.S Army and U.S. Air Force, and continues to build on its proven history of fast flight from the Bell X-1.
Textron Inc. is a multi-industry company that leverages its global network of aircraft, defense, industrial and finance businesses to provide customers with innovative solutions and services. Textron is known around the world for its powerful brands such as Bell, Cessna, Beechcraft, Pipistrel, Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO, Arctic Cat, and Textron Systems. Established in 1986, its Mirabel, Quebec facility assembles and delivers most Bell’s commercial helicopters and delivered its 5,000th helicopter on December 12, 2017.