The Piasecki X-49 “SpeedHawk” is a four-bladed, twin-engined, experimental compound helicopter under development by Piasecki Aircraft. The X-49A is based on the airframe of a Sikorsky YSH-60F Seahawk, but utilizes Piasecki’s proprietary vectored thrust ducted propeller (VTDP) design and includes the addition of lifting wings.
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The concept of the experimental program is to apply the VTDP technology to a production military helicopter to determine any benefit gained through increases in performance or useful load.”SpeedHawk” is a concept aircraft based on applying X-49A compounding concepts to a production UH-60 Black Hawk offering better performance, range, and increases in useful load.
Piasecki X-49A Helicopter Hits 180 Knots
The “SpeedHawk” aircraft includes an SPU (third engine), high forward-swept wing concept, a 45-inch “fuselage plug” cabin extension, and several other drag reducing and performance-oriented improvements, including a rotor hub fairing, landing gear streamlining, and a fly-by-wire flight control system.