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Army Council to Review Bell, Sikorsky FARA Design Iterations; Maj. Gen. Wally Rugen Quoted

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FARA Concepts
FARA Concepts

Maj. Gen. Wally Rugen, director of the U.S. Army Future Vertical Lift Cross-Functional Team, said the branch's requirements oversight council is scheduled to review iterative designs of the Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft from Bell and Sikorsky next month, Defense News reported Thursday.

The two vendors won other transaction agreements in March 2020 to develop FARA prototypes and completed final design readiness assessments with the military branch in December.

“What we saw back on the final designs from industry were impressive to the government team. Industry really did more," Rugen told Defense News.

Army reviewers seek to determine whether the Bell 360 Invictus and Sikorsky Raider X offerings are ready to join a fly-off event planned for late 2022, according to the publication.

The branch said last year it structured the FARA program into three phases that would take place before the aircraft production phase and intends to select a winning builder after the competitive exhibition.

FARA is intended to fill a capability gap the service faced after its decision to retire the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior light observation and reconnaissance aircraft, the report noted.