The X-47B is a tailless, strike fighter-sized unmanned aircraft developed by Northrop Grumman as part of the U.S. Navy’s Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) Carrier Demonstration program. Under a contract awarded in 2007, the company designed, produced and is currently flight testing two X-47B aircraft.
image/text credit: northropgrumman
Air worthiness of the X-47B unmanned combat air system demonstrator was developed at an estimated cost of $813m. The aircraft performed a successful initial test flight at Patuxent River, Maryland, US, in July 2012. The X-47B is expected to enter active naval service by 2019.
AAR unlocks the full potential of what an unmanned surveillance, strike and reconnaissance system can do in support of the Navy. These historical demonstrations solidify the concept of future unmanned aircraft and proved that the X-47B can perform standard missions like aerial refueling and operate seamlessly with manned aircraft as part of the Carrier Air Wing.
The X-47B UCAS was developed by the US Navy as part of the unmanned combat air system carrier demonstration (UCAS-D) programme. The programme aims to develop and demonstrate which fighter sized tailless unmanned aircraft can be deployed from US Navy aircraft carriers.