posted on Mar, 26 2013 @ 08:44 PM
The Navy has announced they will fund four entries in the Unmanned Carrier-Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) program. Those funded
are Boeing (duh), General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Lockheed Martin (again, duh), and Northrop Grumman.
None of the companies have specifically mentioned entries into the program, but NG has been testing the X-47B with the Navy, preparing for flying it
off a carrier in the next couple of years. General Atomics has recently flown the jet powered Avenger, while LM has shown a stealthy UAV concept that
would be their likely entry. Production would begin in 2016.
The US Navy has announced its intention to fund four companies to design new unmanned air vehicles as part of its unmanned carrier-launched
airborne surveillance and strike (UCLASS) programme.
Boeing, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman “have credible, existing, comprehensive UCLASS design solutions,
and associated production capabilities and facilities” to design UAVs through the preliminary design review phase, the navy says.
The presolicitation, announced on 26 March, is the first step towards securing funding for the carrier-based strike and surveillance aircraft. A full
solicitation is likely to go out “in the summer timeframe,” says the navy.