LHTEC, a joint venture between Allison Engines and AlliedSignal Engines, is developing three derivatives of the T800 turboshaft engine. The first, a 17% growth version which is destined to power the Boeing/Sikorsky RAH-66 Comanche helicopter, is on schedule and has completed over 3,000 of the planned 5,000 test hours, says the company. The RAH-66 was first flown on 4 January, and envelope expansion testing has now been resumed after initial delays.

A low-cost civil version, designated the CTS800-4N, is being developed with an integrated control system and gearbox. Finally, LHTEC is flight-testing a turboprop version of the T800, called the CTP800, which could be used to re-engine Bombardier de Havilland Dash 7s operated by the US Army.

Hindustan Aeronautics has completed a 50-hour "proof-of-concept" evaluation of the T800-powered naval version of its Advanced Light Helicopter, and discussions over the next phase of the programme are under way. Several Westland Lynx, Agusta A-129 and Bell UH-1H T800 re-engineing programmes are also under way or proposed.

Five T800-powered UH-1Hs recently underwent a one-year evaluation with the US Border Patrol, but the helicopter was judged to be too large.

Source: Flight International