Lockheed Martin has completed the air vehicle critical design review (CDR) for the US Air Force’s (USAF) Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH) programme.
The CDR allows the programme to move forward in assembling, testing and evaluating the HH-60W helicopter, the company announced Tuesday.
The HH-60W CRH is being developed by Sikorsky Aircraft in cooperation with Lockheed Martin.
Prior to beginning an in-depth design review, the joint Sikorsky and the USAF helicopter programme team generated more than 300 technical documents. It also created and reviewed over 50,000 hardware and software requirements.
The team’s preparatory works also included conducting 17 sub-system CDRs and designing 3,000 new parts.
Sikorsky CRH chief engineer Jim Andrews said: "The team has leveraged digital design tools to generate manufacturing efficiencies that will reduce cost and schedule. This approach will lead ultimately to the HH-60W becoming the first Black Hawk derivative to have a paperless assembly line."
Sikorsky secured a $1.28bn-worth engineering manufacturing and development (EMD) contract from the USAF in June 2014 for the delivery of four HH-60W helicopters, aircrew and maintenance training systems.
The contract also includes development and integration of the next-generation combat rescue platform and mission systems.