Army’s Decision On Huge Helicopter Engine Program Will Impact GE, Honeywell, United Technologies

Sometime in the very near future, probably this month, the U.S. Army will announce the winner of a competition to develop a new engine for most of the service?s helicopters. Called the Improved Turbine Engine Program (ITEP), it is a multibillion-dollar effort that has often been described as the Army?s top aviation modernization priority.

It isn?t hard to see why. The weight of Army light and medium helicopters has been growing by 70-100 pounds per year since they debuted in the last century as new equipment, munitions and armor were added. As a result, both the Black Hawk utility helicopter and the Apache attack helicopter are under-powered when operating in ?high-hot? conditions, meaning above 6,000 feet in temperatures of 95 degrees or greater.