Northrop Grumman Corporation and the U.S. Navy have conducted the first fly-in arrested landing of the X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) demonstrator.
Conducted May 4 at the Navy's shore-based catapult and arresting gear complex, the test represents the first arrested landing by an unmanned aircraft. It marks the beginning of the final phase of testing prior to carrier-based trials planned for later this month.
Pratt & Whitney's F100-PW-220U engine and exhaust system successfully powered the X-47B during the shore-base test.
"Our team worked closely with the Navy and Northrop Grumman to get ready for this important test and Pratt & Whitney's propulsion system performed well, allowing the aircraft to launch and complete planned activity during the fly-in arrested landing," said Jimmy Reed, director of Advanced Engine Programs for Pratt & Whitney. "We look forward to making history when our engine powers the aircraft during the first unmanned carrier trials later this month."
The arrested landing test culminates more than three months of shore-based carrier suitability testing at Naval Air Station Patuxent River. The testing included precision approaches, touch-and-go landings, and precision landings by the X-47B air vehicle.