Boeing just revealed the unmanned aircraft system (UAS) best suited for refueling U.S. Navy jets operating from aircraft carriers.
Above, Boeing photo by Eric Shindelbower
Through its MQ-25 competition, the Navy is seeking unmanned refueling capabilities that would extend the combat range of deployed Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet, Boeing EA-18G Growler, and Lockheed Martin F-35C fighters. The MQ-25 will also have to seamlessly integrate with a carrier’s catapult and launch and recovery systems.
Don ‘BD’ Gaddis, a retired admiral who leads the refueling system program for Boeing’s Phantom Works technology organization, said:
“Boeing has been delivering carrier aircraft to the Navy for almost 90 years. Our expertise gives us confidence in our approach. We will be ready for flight testing when the engineering and manufacturing development contract is awarded.”