Boeing Win Navy’s MQ-25 Stingray Tanker Drone Competition

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After a months-long competition Boeing Win Navy’s MQ-25 Stingray Tanker Drone Competition: U.S. Navy awards Boeing with an $808M contract for four MQ-25A unmanned air vehicles

On 30 August, Boeing has announced that company is awarded an $805,318,853 fixed-price-incentive-firm-target contract to provide the design, development, fabrication, test, verification, certification, delivery, and support of four MQ-25A unmanned air vehicles, including integration into the carrier air wing to provide an initial operational capability to the U.S. Navy.

Boeing had submitted its striking design to the MQ-25 competition last December, facing off against General Atomics and Lockheed Martin. In October 2017, Northrop Grumman announced it would not compete for the contract with a modified version of its X-47B unmanned aircraft, which the Navy had tested extensively as a carrier-borne platform between 2011 and 2015. Boeing was the only entrant with any sort of a fully realized prototype capable of flight.

MQ-25 is designed to provide the U.S. Navy with a much-needed refueling capability. According to the U.S. Navy, the MQ-25 Stingray will allow for better use of combat strike fighters by extending the range of deployed Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet, Boeing EA-18G Growler, and Lockheed Martin F-35C aircraft. MQ-25 will also seamlessly integrate with a carrier’s catapult and launch and recovery systems.

Over the years to come, the U.S. Navy is expected to buy as many as 72 of the carrier-based unmanned aircraft with an estimated total price tag of as much as $13 billion.

Boeing has released the following comment on today’s announcement:

Boeing was awarded the engineering and manufacturing development contract to provide four aircraft. Boeing plans to perform the MQ-25 work in St. Louis.

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