Phenix Ultra 2XL Coaxial Rotorcraft under DoD flight trials

As repoted by, the employee-owned non-traditional defense contractor, Phenix Solutions is flight testing their new aircraft with the U.S. Air Force under the Agility Prime program. Federal Aviation Type Certification is in progress with completion expected in early 2023. In 2019, Phenix Solutions successfully developed, produced, and conducted test flights of two Heavy Lift Rotary UAS concept demonstration platforms for the USAF Agility Prime program that consisted of a single rotor and quadcopter design.  These prototype platforms helped Phenix refine the concept into a highly stable single-engine coaxial remote piloted aircraft (RPA). 

Brian Riese, president of Phenix Solutions, provided the following statement about the prototyping efforts:
“The Phenix prototype flight testing validated our core flight control avionics, which allowed us to advance a ‘modular off-the-shelf’ coaxial design using best of breed technologies – delivering enhanced performance, reliability, and sustainability in an efficient and affordable multi-mission package. The prototypes also help Phenix Solutions optimize propulsion and emerging rotor design by incorporating a ‘zero-maintenance’ virtual bearing counter-rotating differential coaxial blade system.  This radical design eliminates over 60% of the maintenance costs while increasing aircraft availability rates. The Ultra 2XL actually ‘bends the cost curve!’” The coaxial aircraft can be operated Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) and can avoid both potential obstacles and intruder aircraft throughout all phases of flight. Image of Ultra 2XL courtesy of Phenix Solutions.

Our thanks to Robin E. Alexander, President ATC, alexander technical[at]gmail[dot]com, for her assistance sourcing this report.