Navy conducts first test flight of a “fleet-friendly” variant of the MV-22B Osprey
The US Navy is trying out a “fleet-friendly” variant of the MV-22B Osprey tiltrotor aircraft, in hopes that it can take over the Carrier Onboard Delivery (COD) role held by the venerable C-2 Greyhound.
In order to meet Navy specs, the CMV-22B was fitted to house extra fuel, giving it a range of 1,150 nautical miles.
With the added range and ability to take off (vertically) from non-carrier ships (something the fixed-wing C-2 could not do), the versatility of the Osprey allows it to deliver supplies, mail, and personnel in a historical and meaningful way.
“With the ability to travel up to 1,150 nautical miles, the CMV-22B will be a lifeline for our servicemen and women out at sea,” commented Kristin Houston, vice president, Boeing tiltrotor programs and director, Bell Boeing V-22 program. “The quality and safety built into this aircraft will revolutionize the way the US Navy fulfills its critical carrier onboard delivery mission.”
The prototype/test aircraft is painted in a neat white and grey scheme that mimics the very C-2s it was designed to replace.
According to AIN Online, the C-2A is expected to retire in 2024.
Bell-Boeing is scheduled to deliver the first aircraft to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 21 at Patuxent River, Maryland, for developmental testing and evaluation.
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