Lockheed Martin Celebrates K-Max Helicopter Success

Published 07/24 2014 05:00PM

Updated 07/24 2014 08:19PM

Lockheed Martin is celebrating the success of its K-Max helicopter deployment in Afghanistan.

A ceremony was held at its Owego site today.

Lockheed welcomed home the K-Max cargo team, which has been overseas for about three years.

K-Max uses state of the art technology and can be flown unmanned and operated basically by a remote control system. That is great in combat situations, because cargo can be delivered to troops in difficult situations without risking the life of an aircrew.

"By taking convoys off of IED laden roads, countless men and women were not exposed to these deadly threats. Not only did we deploy, but we made history while we were doing so. Highlighted on the banner just behind me are a sampling of some of the awards garnered by this program and its supporting team," said general manger Dan Spoor.

In total, K-Max delivered 4.5 million pounds of cargo and completed more than 2,100 flight hours.

Major Kyle O'Connor says K-Max exceeded expectations.

"During our first deployment, we got up to a tempo of running six missions a night and I think we were over 33,000 pounds a night, when we were running missions and stuff. It came a long way. I mean we were doing in a day what they initially tested us to do in a week as they were developing the concept," said O'Connor.

Now that the crew is home, the K-Max program will be reevaluated to see if any improvements can be made to it.

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