Both main rotor blades and tail rotor blades are now undergoing qualification testing at Sikorsky's Stratford, Conn., headquarters. Tests completed to date include spinning of the blades on whirl towers to measure balance, and initial fatigue tests to determine structural strength. Blade qualification testing will continue over several years to include stress and fatigue tests, and additional whirl tower testing to validate aerodynamic stability, tip deflection, and rotational twist along each blade's length.This first set of blades will be attached to the CH-53K Ground Test Vehicle at Sikorsky's Developmental Flight Center in West Palm Beach, Fla. Marine Corps pilots and Sikorsky test engineers will spin the blades on the GTV as part of the Shakedown Light-Off, a term used to describe the test of engines, transmissions, and blades running together for the first time.
Sikorsky Completes Initial Tests Of First Rotor Blades For CH-53K Helicopter
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