Customer Feedback on X2 Technology™ Demonstrator: Possibilities Abound for Versatile Aircraft

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Customer Feedback on X2 Technology Demonstrator: Possibilities Abound for Versatile Aircraft

March 31, 2008

  SANTIAGO, Chile - FIDAE AIR SHOW, The X2 Technology Demonstrator, a research and development aircraft built by Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., could transform the aviation industry by demonstrating technologies that, if brought to production, potentially bring significant improvements in productivity across a wide variety of missions, according to market feedback collected by Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. Sikorsky Aircraft is a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX)

The X2 Technology Demonstrator is designed to cruise comfortably at 250 knots, while retaining desirable helicopter attributes including excellent low speed handling, seamless transition to high speed flight, and efficient hovering and autorotation safety.

Sikorsky Aircraft brought the Demonstrator to the Heli-Expo exhibition in Texas in February in part to invite and collect market feedback on the suite of technologies as the program moves toward first flight. A standing-room-only crowd watched the unveiling of the Demonstrator, and dozens of customers and industry veterans provided feedback during the three-day exhibition.

“X2 Technology has the potential to revolutionize the industry and customers are recognizing that it also has the potential to revolutionize the way they do business,” said James Kagdis, Sikorsky Manager, Advanced Programs. “They are intrigued by the technology and appreciate the increased capabilities that it brings to their missions when compared to the traditional, single main rotor helicopters and other vertical flight aircraft. They also recognize the commitment that Sikorsky has made to explore this technology, and Sikorsky’s expertise in this arena.

“Customer input is very important to us as a company, so we are actively seeking market feedback as we move this program forward,” Kagdis added.

Customers have commented on the variety of possible missions for X2 Technology, including offshore oil, executive transport, search and rescue, law enforcement and emergency medical services, as well as military applications. Other points of interest expressed by customers were:

  • Economics: Increased speed offers the potential to positively affect economic models and improve productivity;
  • Next-generation operations: The increased capabilities present new possibilities for the future

The aircraft is continuing ground runs, which will be followed by first flight. Further development will be required to adapt the technology to a production program.

The X2 Technology Demonstrator is an integrated suite of technologies intended to advance the state-of-the-art, counter-rotating coaxial rotor helicopter. Among the innovative technologies the X2 Technology Demonstrator employs are:

  • Fly-by-wire flight controls
  • Counter-rotating rigid rotor blades
  • Hub drag reduction
  • Active vibration control
  • Integrated auxiliary propulsion system

Sikorsky Aircraft first announced the initiative to develop an integrated suite of technologies called X2 Technology in June 2005. The X2 Technology Demonstrator is built as a rapid prototyping collaboration effort with Sikorsky subsidiary Schweizer Aircraft. The project is solely funded by Sikorsky Aircraft.

Learn more about the X2 Technology suite of technologies by visiting Sikorsky Aircraft’s newly redesigned company Web site at www.sikorsky.com.

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., USA, is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacture, and service. The company's long commitment to safety and innovation is reflected in its mission statement: "We pioneer flight solutions that bring people home everywhere... every time." United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., USA, provides a broad range of high-technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.

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