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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

R&W EXCLUSIVE: New Schweizer Model? The 434

Jim McKenna

Schweizer Aircraft’s newest helicopter will be the turbine-powered Model 434, sources familiar with the program tell      Rotor & Wing. The Sikorsky Aircraft subsidiary is pursuing accelerated development of the aircraft.  Based on Schweizer’s Model 333, the new helicopter will draw on the four-bladed rotor and dynamics developed for the Northrop Grumman MQ-4B Fire Scout unmanned aerial vehicle. That UAV, being built for the U.S. Navy and Army, also is based on the Model 333. The 434 is intended to compete with the Eurocopter EC120, Bell Helicopter 206, and, by extension, Robinson Helicopter’s new, turbine R66. Robinson is developing that Rolls-Royce 300-powered, five-seat aircraft in part to replace older-generation 206s. Schweizer has received orders from a launch customer in the Middle East, according to sources, and has more orders in hand.    For related news
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