by Richard Tomkins
Washington (UPI) Apr 5, 2017
The heavy lift CH-53K helicopter by Lockheed Martin company Sikorsky has gained Milestone C status, paving the way for low-rate initial production funding.
The helicopter, meant for the U.S. Marine Corps, was granted the status after passing a U.S. Defense Acquisition Board review, Lockheed Martin said.
"This affirmative Milestone C decision validates the maturity and the robust capability of the King Stallion in meeting the United States Marine Corps mission requirements," Dr. Michael Torok, Sikorsky vice president of CH-53K Programs, said in a press release. "This establishes the CH-53K as a production program and marks another critical step toward our goal of delivering this tremendous capability to the USMC."
A total of 200 CH-53Ks are to be acquired by the Marines. The first six aircraft are under contract and are expected to be delivered starting next year. Long-lead procurement of parts and materials for the first two low-rate initial production helicopters is underway.
The CH-53K King Stallion has three times the lift of the CH-53E that it is to replace. Also, it can carry as many as three external loads at the same time. Features also include fly-by-wire flight controls and enhanced stability.
"We have just successfully launched the production of the most powerful helicopter our nation has ever designed," Col. Hank Vanderborght, U.S. Marine Corps program manager for the Naval Air Systems Command's Heavy Lift Helicopters program, said in a press release. "This incredible positive step function in capability is going to revolutionize the way our nation conducts business in the battlespace by ensuring a substantial increase in logistical throughput into that battlespace."
Toronto, Canada (SPX) Mar 31, 2017
The CanX-7 nanosatellite built by Space Flight Laboratory (SFL) at the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies (UTIAS) has validated real-time detection and tracking of aircraft by satellite in low-Earth orbit. The next mission phase will begin in early May with deployment of drag sails developed by SFL to accelerate the deorbiting of small satellites as a practical solution to the ... read more
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