Thursday, July 14, 2011
Interview with Sikorsky’s Jeff Pino
Andrew Drwiega talked exclusively to three of Sikorsky’s presidents on the eve of the Paris Air Show 2011, including Sikorsky Aircraft President Jeffrey Pino.
Rotor & Wing: There is a widespread international concern today over the direction and pace of rotorcraft development in order to meet future needs. A main focus of concern seems to be the lack of government funding. Sikorsky appears to have created its own solution witnessed by the X2/S-97 development process. This seems to be the first step in developing a capability for the future. I’m also thinking of the potential for scalability—is growth ingrained in the program as well?
Jeff Pino: If someone isn’t willing to pay for development, then we feel that we can gain an advantage by doing it ourselves—and there are a couple of us doing that [meaning Eurocopter’s X³]. Sikorsky has been focused on this for around five years. X2 is a solution to a set of problems. The demonstrations did a little better than we thought, so it made sense to move into a development based on a Request for Proposal that may not exist anymore, but there is a set of requirements that look like a Light Attack/Armed Aerial Scout. We are learning things with X2 and S-97 that we are backward deploying into products that will generationally look like the current products, but will link that technology back.
More: Sikorsky’s Comet; Boldly Funding the Future
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