The US Army has chosen AVX Aircraft Company's design for inclusion in its high-speed Joint Multi-Role Technology Demonstrator (JMR-TD) rotorcraft programme.
AVX, formed by Bell Helicopter veterans in 2005, says it is in negotiations with the service for a JMR-TD contract, which is expected to be awarded in mid-September.
The company joins Bell and a joint Sikorsky/Boeing team in being selected for the programme, which is expected to lead into the army's nascent Future Vertical Lift effort to replace the Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk and potentially the Boeing AH-64 Apache in the 2030s.
"The AVX proposal offers the capabilities the army wants for the future fleet of utility and attack aircraft at a very attractive price," the company says. Like the Sikorsky/Boeing design, AVX's proposed design is a coaxial-rotor compound machine.
AVX says it has teamed with "a number of experienced aerospace companies for development of the AVX JMR design", which it claims will mean a lower price tag than competing designs.
Meanwhile, Piasecki, another smaller company competing for the army's business, did the not make the grade. "Unfortunately, Piasecki was not selected for the JMR-TD," the company says.
EADS North America opted to drop out of the programme, but it is not known whether its intended design was found to be acceptable by the army or not.
Source: Flight International