V-22 Testing Air-to-Air Refueling Capability


Released on Wednesday, March 31, 2004
United States of America
CV-22B Osprey
HV-22A Osprey
MV-22B Osprey
km - kilometre
The US Navy announced that the V-22 tilt-rotor aircraft started the air-to-air refueling tests on 22 March at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland, for the first time after V-22 resumed flight tests in May 2002.

The air-to-air refueling tests were carried out by V-22 Osprey test vehicle number 22 over the course of two one hour sorties with a KC-130F playing the role of the tanker aircraft. The refueling exercise was done at airspeeds around 200 knots (370 km per hour) and 10,000 feet (3,000 meters) of altitude.

Currently, the V-22 aircraft features a 11-foot (3.35 meters) fixed refueling probe which has been used for this tests and the Osprey production model will feature a 9-foot (2.75 meters) retractable refueling probe intended for shipboard operations. The air-to-air refueling qualification tests with a retractable probe are scheduled for May this year to be carried out on V-22 No. 21.

The air-to-air refueling capability would be one important asset over legacy rotary wing aircraft that V-22 will replace. After air-to-air refueling, formation flight, and shipboard operations testing have been completed the V-22 will begin operational testing prior to eagerly awaited operational deployment.

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