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Military eyes fast new replacement for Blackhawk

Then-Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno asks a question about the SB>1 Defiant by a Boeing representative at the Association of the United States Army Convention and exposition show in Washington, D.C., Oct. 14, 2014.

MIKKI L. SPRENKLE/U.S. ARMY

By SEAN PHILIP COTTER | Boston Herald | Published: January 2, 2019

(Tribune News Service) — A striking new double-rotor helicopter may soon replace the military's iconic Blackhawk, as the observers hope the "bigger and badder" new chopper could go about its business farther, faster and safer than the military's current helicopters.

The SB>1 DEFIANT, as makers Lockheed Martin and Boeing are currently calling it, has two rotors on top and a propeller facing backward on the tail, according to the companies.

It's supposed to be able to fly at 320 mph – double the speed of current helicopters – and be able to go much farther between refuelings, according to the publication Popular Mechanics. Task and Purpose described the chopper as a "bigger and badder" version of previous dual-rotor helicopters, which have a mixed record.

The military has been seeking a new generation of helicopters after various ones have crashed over the past several years during operations in the Middle East, according to Popular Mechanics.

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