MD Helicopters Inc. (MDHI) has made an unexpected bid to enter the race for the U.S. Army’s Armed Aerial Scout (AAS) requirement, with an upgraded version of its MD 530F light helicopter. First flown in March, the MD 540F has the six-blade rotor from the larger MD 600 and new composite blades, giving it a 4,000-lb. gross weight, up from the 530F’s 3,100 lb., and almost 500 lb. more useful load. MDHI says it will offer the 540F — its first new helicopter in 15 years — for AAS despite ...


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