Bell Tilt-Rotor Makes First Ground Test in Bid for Army Contract

Bell Helicopter revved the engines and turned the rotors this week in the first ground test of its experimental V-280 Valor tilt-rotor aircraft, which is vying for contracts in the Army’s “Future Vertical Lift” program.

In a statement, Bell, a subsidiary of Textron, said the “restrained ground run test” with a V-280 prototype anchored to the ground Wednesday at its Amarillo, Texas, site was the first in “a series of functional tests running all aircraft systems and flight controls in preparation for first flight this fall.”

The test came ahead of the 2017 Association of the U.S. Army’s annual meeting and exposition next week in Washington at which Bell President Mitch…

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