Russia’s Kamov Design Bureau is working on a two-seat, 378-knot compound helicopter that features an integral delta wing and forward canards, coaxial rigid main rotors, stealth features, and an internal weapons bay. Details of the design leaked last month after a presentation by Kamov’s chief designer, Sergei Mikheyev.
Forward high-speed thrust will be provided by a pair of aft-mounted fanjets that will also drive the main rotors via connected gearboxes. The design, if successful, would provide a substantial speed advantage—nearly 100 knots in some cases—over U.S. Army technology demonstration aircraft currently under development as part of the Future Vertical Lift program, including the tiltrotor Bell/Lockheed V-280, Sikorsky/Boeing SB-1 Defiant, and Sikorsky S-97 Raider compound helicopters, as well as European designs such as the Airbus RACER.
The Russian design is believed to be in the concept stage, while a variety of other Russian high-speed designs remain under development under the umbrella of the Russian Advanced Commercial Helicopter (RACHEL) program. A technology demonstrator from that program, the Mi-24K, achieved a forward speed of 219 knots in 2016.