Image credit: Northrop Grumman Corporation
The team have taken a first critical step toward demonstrating that the X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) can be maneuvered wirelessly and safely on the crowded deck of an aircraft carrier.
They demonstrated the CDU’s ability to control the X-47B’s engine thrust; to roll the aircraft forward, brake and stop. To use its nose wheel steering to execute tight, precision turns, and to maneuver the aircraft efficiently into a catapult or out of the landing area following a mock carrier landing.
Northrop Grumman is the Navy’s prime contractor for the UCAS Carrier Demonstration (UCAS-D) program.
“The CDU is fundamental to integrating the X-47B seamlessly into carrier deck operations,” said Daryl Martis, Northrop Grumman’s UCAS-D test director. “It will allow us to move the aircraft quickly and precisely into the catapult for launch, or out of the landing area following recovery. Both of these activities are essential to maintaining the rhythm of the flight deck.”
source Northrop Grumman Corporation