Ukraine shows why future vertical lift concept is critical to U.S. Army: officialsNews
April 28, 2023
NASHVILLE, Tennessee. The ongoing conflict in Ukraine underscores the importance of the future vertical lift concept for Army aviation, according to speakers at the 2023 Quad A conference here on Thursday.
During a panel discussion on Army aviation technologies, Army officials highlighted the need for increased range, speed, and lethality to counter Russia and other adversaries, arguing that future vertical lift helps the Army get there.
There are tremendous challenges when it comes to maneuvering forces to block and counter an attack in the diverse terrain of countries bordering Ukraine, such as Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria, said Army Maj. Gen. Joseph McGee, commanding general of the 101st Airborne Division. The future vertical lift concept enhances the ability to conduct operations in these regions, where "agility, the ability to maneuver quickly to be able to actually respond to the enemy's attack, and then be able to move your forces for position advantage" are critical, he said.
The increased speed, range, and lethality offered by future vertical lift would be an advantage for stopping attacks and holding critical infrastructure in various terrains, from mountainous to open tank country, McGee said.
In response to the moderator's question about how future vertical lift would mitigate lift deficits, U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Steven Rudder (Ret.) highlighted some of the previous problems it would need to solve, talking about the importance of fuel, refueling options, and long-range communication capabilities for the special ops community. He also emphasized the need for improved weather forecasting and oxygen supply for high-altitude operations.
When it comes to solving some of those problems, future vertical lift has a lot of potential going forward, Rudder said.
"I'm excited to see you guys bring this capability online,” he said.