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Boeing Begins MQ-25 Stingray Testing in Fall 2020 to Support Navy; Dave Bujold Quoted

2 mins read
MQ-25 Stingray
MQ-25 Stingray

Boeing has announced that its MQ-25 Stingray, The U.S. Navy aircraft carrier-borne tanker drone, has planned to resume test flights in fall 2020, Defense News reported on Friday

“When we resume flight testing later this year, we’ll have the opportunity to gather test points about the aerodynamics of that pod and the software commands that control it — all happening well before we deliver the Navy’s first MQ-25 jet with the same pod,” MQ-25 program director Dave Bujold said in a statement from the aircraft’s manufacturer, Boeing.

Boeing engineers will primarily focus on the aerodynamics of the store pod mounted on the Stingray test article to observe hose and drogue behavior while being dragged behind the airframe. There have been recent concerns about scheduling of the U.S. Navy’s testing. 

“Program officials stated that, among other things, the Navy’s potential inability to maintain its schedule commitments could require modifications to the contract that would impact the fixed-price terms,” the Government Accountability Office (GAO) reported. “Specifically, the Navy faces limited flexibility to install MQ-25 control centers on aircraft carriers.”

The Navy’s MQ-25 Stingray aerial refueling drone took its first flight Sept. 19, a historic step toward integrating an unmanned aircraft into the service’s powerful strike arm.

About Boeing

Boeing is the world’s largest aerospace company and leading provider of commercial airplanes, defense, space and security systems, and global services. As the top U.S. exporter, the company supports commercial and government customers in more than 150 countries.

Boeing employs more than 150,000 people worldwide and leverages the talents of a global supplier base. Building on a legacy of aerospace leadership, Boeing continues to lead in technology and innovation, deliver for its customers and invest in its people and future growth.

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