X3 flights to restart
In Paris last week, Eurocopter president and chief executive Lutz Bertling confirmed that
the company was resuming the test flight programme of the X3 (Xcubed) prototype, starting
in February 2012.
The company said that it was always the intention to restart flying with
the aircraft and to discover more about the technologies used in the prototype.
Eurocopter will test the new technologies more and expects to fly even
faster during this round of test flights. They said if they gained the helicopter
speed record with these flights it would be ‘the cherry on the cake’. The
company hopes that some of the technological advances made by the X3 prototype
might be used in future helicopter designs.
Eurocopter are particularly interested in looking at longer flights to
distant oil and gas platforms where speed and endurance matters.