posted on Dec, 11 2012 @ 08:02 PM
The Navy was supposed to send out the Request For Proposals (RFP) for the new Unmanned Carrier-Launched Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) some time
this month, but has now delayed it until sometime in early 2013.
The problem appears to be one of defining what the service needs in the platform, and trying to get the perfect platform. They should be working on
getting a less perfect, capable platform in the air. The Navy plan is to have at least one squadron ready to train on a carrier by 2020 (they won't
deploy until some time after that). That's only seven years if they get the bidding process right the first time, and we've all seen how the
military has done lately with bidding.
It's expected that Northrop Grumman will offer an X-47 variant, Lockheed will offer the Sea Ghost, General Atomics a variant of the Predator C, and
Boeing a new design based on what they learned with the X-45C Phantom Ray.
The US Navy has delayed a request for proposals (RFP) for its unmanned carrier-launched surveillance and strike (UCLASS) aircraft programme until
"We are looking at the early part of 2013 now," the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) says. A draft RFP is now likely to be released between
January and March, possibly due to difficulties in finalizing the requirements for the new programme. Previously, the RFP was scheduled to be released