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Saturday, April 18, 2015

US Navy robot war-jet refuels in air: But Mav and Iceman are going down fighting

X-47B UCLASS AARA US Navy X-47B unmanned aircraft demonstrator has successfully carried out air-to-air refuelling from a tanker, the last of the feats the X-47B project was intended to accomplish. The two robot jets will now be retired, either to museums or the Pentagon's famous desert aircraft boneyard in Arizona.

The test took place yesterday off the coast of Maryland. X-47B "Salty Dog 502" successfully plugged into a contractor-operated tanker aircraft, demonstrating that an unmanned, tailless aeroplane with a stealthy shape can not only take off and land on an aircraft carrier but also refuel while airborne.

It had already been shown that un-piloted aircraft can refuel air-to-air but it wasn't known if a robotic combat-worthy carrier-based machine could do it too.

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  1. Anonymous19/4/15 06:02

    Why are they being retired? Seems like a waste. It looks like the demonstration has only been going on for a year. Isn't there more they can do?

    1. “Given the differences between the X-47 and the UCLASS and the amount of money it would take to make it a more useful risk reduction platform” it would be cost prohibitive



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