The second of four Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft built to production standards was delivered on Saturday, Sept. 13 to the Patuxent River Naval Air Warfare Test Center, Md.
The aircraft began the 1,075-mile flight from Bell Helicopter Textron in Fort Worth, Texas, to the V-22 Integrated Test Team at Patuxent River, at 8:30 a.m. CST Friday.
Piloted by Marine Corps test pilots Maj. Bill Wainwright and Maj. Kevin Gross, the aircraft stopped to refuel at New River Marine Corps Air Station, Ala., where it remained overnight. Following replacement of a malfunctioning data entry unit, the aircraft took off again, arriving at the Naval Air Warfare Center at 12:15 p.m. EST, on Saturday. The flight took 5.1 flight hours.
Osprey No. 8 is fully instrumented for flight testing and will be used to complete envelope development testing through 1999. It then will be modified with the addition of the terrain following/terrain avoidance radar and additional wing fuel tanks of the Special Operations CV-22 variant and will be used to integrate that equipment into the Osprey design.
The V-22 is being developed for U.S. Marine Corps combat assault, Special Operations Command long-range exfiltration and U.S. Navy fleet logistic support, special warfare and combat search and rescue missions. The Bell Boeing Tiltrotor Team comprises Bell Helicopter Textron of Fort Worth, Texas, a wholly owned subsidiary of Textron, Inc., and The Boeing Company in Philadelphia, which produces rotorcraft and other advanced aerospace products.