The first prototype deck drone MQ-25A will receive refueling equipment

The first prototype deck drone MQ-25A will receive refueling equipment

Boeing has suspended flight tests of the first prototype of the promising deck-based drone tanker MQ-25A Stingray for installing refueling equipment on it. It is reported by Flightglobal.


The first flight of the MQ-25A was made in September 2019, and by the time the test was suspended, it managed to fly in total for about 30 hours. According to the plans of the developers, flight tests of the device will be carried out for another year and a half.

In 2018, Boeing won a $ 805 million contract for the construction of the first four copies of the MQ-25A. The basis for the development of the new apparatus was the secret prototype X-47, which was created in the framework of the subsequently canceled project. Initially, the Navy command planned to adopt an unmanned stealth bomber, which could deliver bombing attacks, while remaining invisible to air defense systems. The project was named RAQ-25. In 2016, the U.S. Navy formulated new requirements for a deck-based drone, changing its main purpose. The project was renamed the MQ-25 Stingray and redesigned as an unmanned tanker. At the same time, the military command refused the stealth characteristics of the aircraft, and also removed the ability to carry weapons from the requirements.

On April 2, 2020, the U.S. Navy entered into an additional contract with Boeing for the supply of another 3 drones MQ-25A. All will be used in demonstration and evaluation trials.

The US Navy plans to purchase 72 Stingray units, allocating a total of about 13 billion dollars for their purchase. This will ease the load on the fleet F / A-18F Super Hornet, refueling other aircraft. The Pentagon intends to put into operation the first drone MQ-25A in 2024.
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  1. Vitaly Tsymbal April 5 2020 08: 50 New
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    WOW !!!!! laughing I realized that the Americans had long been preparing for self-isolation of the population, and therefore drones were developing ... We again lag behind laughing Putin is to blame laughing - self-insulated us, but did not provide drones !!!
    1. Insurgent April 5 2020 08: 58 New
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      The first prototype deck drone MQ-25A will receive refueling equipment

      The graphics are of course, but it looks pretty realistic.

      And immediately I want to note one drawback (in my opinion), and specifically - one refueling unit, that is, the inability of an unmanned tanker to refuel two aircraft at once ...

      1. Free wind April 5 2020 09: 28 New
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        I did not understand in the Boeing article, but in the Lockheed video. Handsome. For a long time the generals spit at us, the Americans are stupid, cowardly, etc. afraid of fighting, until it begins to reach that the life of a soldier is dear.
      2. knn54 April 5 2020 09: 53 New
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        It is impressive that a Boeing (or rather Phantom Works) from a failed shock reconnaissance drone was able to “give birth” to a worthy winged tanker. At the same time, beating “toothy” competitors: General Atomics, Northrop Grumman and Lockheed.
      3. grandfather_Kostya April 5 2020 10: 48 New
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        And immediately I want to note one drawback (in my opinion), and specifically, one refueling unit, that is, the inability of an unmanned tanker to refuel two aircraft at once ...

        Two aircraft at once in terms of the wingspan of this baby will not fit.
        1. Insurgent April 5 2020 11: 54 New
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          Quote: grandfather_Kostya
          Two aircraft at once in terms of the wingspan of this baby will not fit.

          And it’s elementary to make fuel supply hoses of different lengths, isn’t that an option?
          1. grandfather_Kostya April 5 2020 12: 33 New
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            And it’s elementary to make fuel supply hoses of different lengths, isn’t that an option?

            The forward engine will create a chatter for the rear. Yes, and it makes no sense, given the small supply of fuel for distribution. Moreover, take-off from the deck in any case takes place in turn, albeit with a minimum delay.
            1. Artyom1979 April 5 2020 16: 45 New
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            2. Insurgent April 6 2020 07: 15 New
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              Quote: grandfather_Kostya
              The forward engine will create a chatter for the rear.

              You ALREADY blown the layout in the wind tunnel to make such a statement?

              Quote: grandfather_Kostya
              it makes no sense, given the small supply of fuel for distribution


              Do you know the fuel volumes on the MQ-25A?

              Quote: grandfather_Kostya
              Moreover, take-off from the deck in any case takes place in turn, albeit with a minimum delay.

              This, in general, is babbling ...
              1. Zhevlonenko April 6 2020 09: 04 New
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                If it is true that it was made on the basis of the x-47, then its payload is in the region of 2-2,5 tons, the mass of fuel is f-16 is 3,5 tons, "You ALREADY blew the model in the wind tunnel to make such a statement" blowing out the layout is a known fact.
              2. grandfather_Kostya April 6 2020 09: 09 New
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                Have you ALREADY blown a model in a wind tunnel to make such a statement?

                Blowing out a mock-up of a glider with a working mock-up of the engine is something new.
                Do you know the fuel volumes on the MQ-25A?

                From the picture kindly provided by Artyom1979 yesterday at 16:45 the MQ-25A size fits into the average fighter, and therefore the carrying capacity is up to about 10 tons. Minus the pumping mechanism itself. Enough to refuel the link of 4 Hornets.
                About "babble" without comm ...
    2. APASUS April 5 2020 10: 18 New
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      Quote: Vitaliy Tsymbal
      WOW !!!!! laughing I realized that the Americans had long been preparing for self-isolation of the population, and therefore drones were developing ... We again lag behind laughing Putin is to blame laughing - self-insulated us, but did not provide drones !!!

      Can you share the info, what sums our financial top allocated for the purchase of UAVs, for the needs of the Russian Navy. What systems will be purchased and in what quantity?
      Here we are for one rejoice for the Navy and Putin!
      1. Vitaly Tsymbal April 5 2020 14: 03 New
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        It's not about the "sums of money" .... it’s not money that is fighting or even military equipment and weapons - PEOPLE are fighting !!! You can create a bunch of drones a lot and different, but if not for the soldiers of Saddam, then our VKS would be ineffective in destroying the barmaley !!!! All these super-dupers are amazing modern US drones (which couch warriors so sincerely admire for which I’ll get a bunch of minuses because they simply don’t have enough knowledge and experience) could not “defeat” the Taliban Yanks !!! Or am I wrong about the US mission in Afghanistan?
  2. Strong beast. I have long believed that the future of strike and assault aviation is for drones. And in the case of a successful project, enterprising Americans, for sure, intrusively "drag in" it to all allies with an aircraft-carrying fleet. Similar to f35.
    1. Vitaly Tsymbal April 5 2020 09: 05 New
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      What is the strength? Tomorrow there will be an effective “antidote” against the “unmanned poison” and again a person with his intuition and ability to irrational action will be required. Maybe I'm wrong.
      1. Это будет tomorrow. And he flies today. And even tomorrow losses in personnel will be minimized.
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        2. Zhevlonenko April 6 2020 09: 12 New
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          the fate of his prototype awaits him, it will be possible to talk about the prospects when they put and test the tanks on him, if his carrying capacity is like x-47 2-2,5 tons, then I don’t see much point in such a tanker.
  3. Avior April 5 2020 09: 28 New
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    While drones can be used to a limited extent in hostilities and difficulties, they have niche in demand.
    The tanker is one of them.
    Supersound is not required, and generally high speed and maneuverability,
    It is required to stably maintain the course, altitude and speed, which is fully capable of providing automatic control.
    The fact that there is no person is smaller in size and better in relation to the payload.
  4. Thrifty April 5 2020 09: 46 New
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    Then it’s better to integrate a spray gun into it, let the birds paint in flight, thereby scaring them away from the airfields! The Yankees did an airplane, for which they themselves do not know what task? ?? recourse belay
    1. Thunderbolt April 5 2020 11: 19 New
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      Quote: Thrifty
      ! The Yankees did an airplane, for which they themselves do not know what task? ??

      A significant increase in the combat radius of an aircraft carrier wing --- Isn’t this a task /// 1.200 km against the previous 800 ///?
      1. Vitaly Tsymbal April 5 2020 14: 09 New
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        Something I didn’t hear about the real victories of the carrier wings - so the “scarecrows” are swimming (they are swimming, and they don’t go as they say at the Moreman), and even Kim wasn’t scared, and he didn’t have super drones and made the US “scare” .... Or am I wrong again?
        1. Thunderbolt April 5 2020 14: 49 New
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          Quote: Vitaliy Tsymbal
          Something I have not heard about the real victories of carrier wings

          In all its small and large wars /// we will take Yugoslavia as a reference point, because you’ll probably call the war of aircraft carriers on maintenance in WWII obsolete ... they say rockets and electronic warfare appeared, then this and that, but aviation was not armed with Browning machine guns now))) /// did the Yankees actively use carrier-based aviation. Did Yugoslavia win? Iraq won? Or did they complete the task of overthrowing the US regimes?
          Quote: Vitaliy Tsymbal
          and even Kim wasn’t scared, and he, having no super drones, made the US "get scared" ....

          The "Korean question" is not being solved by aircraft carriers. And you should understand this well. But let's look at their neighbor --- China! Their Communist Party voiced ambitious goals to become No. 2050 in the world by 1. Powerfully increasing the capabilities of their fleet, developing and aircraft carrier program. Say they are fools, once engaged in useless "scarecrows"? But I think that they don’t want to leave their destroyer squads without air cover, without a long and flexible arm.
          1. Vitaly Tsymbal April 5 2020 20: 07 New
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            A bit of history:
            Gunboat diplomacy was used by the United States in China to suppress a boxing uprising at the beginning of the XNUMXth century, during which control over Chinese rivers was exercised by American and English gunboats, as well as in Latin America.
            According to the definition of William Safire - "the iron fist of the threat of force in the velvet glove of diplomatic relations." This expression is now associated with any practice of using naval forces for foreign policy purposes. Nowadays, the synonymous expression “aircraft carrier diplomacy” has appeared

            China knows and remembers history .... China needs air-bearing “groups” to protect maritime trade routes. The USA openly shows who is the boss on the sea trade routes, China does not like it and is already snarling (the conflict zone in the South China Sea is an example). History also shows an example of the Arab-Israeli wars, when the Americans supporting Israel did not dare to use their aircraft carriers against the enemy behind which the USSR stood.
            And today, all these American aircraft carrier naval forces are needed only for the implementation of the DIPLOMACY OF CANONER !!! Speaking of North Korea - the war of the 50s Kimov taught that you need to be able to withstand not only aviation but also aircraft carriers, so they have such means ... The truth is that little is known ...
            Yugoslavia and Iraq - not aircraft carriers won there, traitors won there !!!!
      2. Zhevlonenko April 6 2020 09: 13 New
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        one tanker for 1 plane? Great benefit
  5. Doccor18 April 5 2020 10: 28 New
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    Good news for them, disturbing for us. Unpleasant to see a swarm of UAVs somewhere km. for 2000 from an aircraft carrier.
    1. Vitaly Tsymbal April 5 2020 14: 14 New
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      Here I am sitting in self-isolation in Stavropol and trembling - suddenly, instead of a coronovirus, a swarm of American drones fly to me and my blossoming apricots, destroy the plums crying I honestly say live and did not see the aircraft carrier (and you saw live and how it fights?), And from the body of the production about horror films I never even worried))))
  6. voyaka uh April 5 2020 11: 50 New
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    The X-47 was not exactly a Boeing - Northrop Gruman.
    He successfully passed the entire test cycle on an aircraft carrier.
    But the Navy was not psychologically ready for drones.
    This is a new logistics, and they already had many new products at the same time: F-35C, electric catapults.
    Now ripe.
    1. Oleg83 April 5 2020 13: 05 New
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      Quote: voyaka uh
      The X-47 was not exactly a Boeing - Northrop Gruman.
      He successfully passed the entire test cycle on an aircraft carrier.
      But the Navy was not psychologically ready for drones.
      This is a new logistics, and they already had many new products at the same time: F-35C, electric catapults.
      Now ripe.


      Officially, the fleet abandoned the X-47 due to the small mass of the combat load - 2 tons. Then one US admiral wrote that the fleet needs an attack drone the size of an F14 and a payload of at least 5-6 tons