Boeing [NYSE: BA] successfully completed a key Joint Unmanned Combat Air Systems (J-UCAS) X-45C system requirements review with its DARPA, U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy customers.
The review was a joint assessment that allows Boeing to continue executing the J-UCAS Capability Demonstration Program (CDP). During the two-day review, Boeing provided a comprehensive X-45C system analysis verifying it has incorporated the customers' performance requirements into the aircraft. A final design review will occur later this summer.
"This review confirms the X-45C system we designed and are building is on track and is the right solution to meet the customers' needs," said Darryl Davis, Boeing Global Strike Solutions vice president. "The feedback we received was extremely positive."
Under the J-UCAS X-45C CDP, Boeing will build and demonstrate three X-45C vehicles, two mission control elements, and integrate a common operating system. The first X-45C will be completed in 2006, with flight-testing scheduled to begin in early 2007. An operational assessment will begin that same year and will focus on the X-45's ability to conduct suppression of enemy air defenses; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; and strike missions for the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy.
The X-45C will be 39 feet long with a 49-foot wingspan, cruise at 0.80 Mach at an altitude of 40,000 feet, carry a 4,500 pound weapon payload, and fly a combat radius of more than 1,200 nautical miles.
Boeing previously built two X-45A vehicles, which are currently in flight test and being used to verify the core functionality of the successive software blocks at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. In February 2005, the two X-45A aircraft flew a simulated combat mission during their 50 th flight at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.
The J-UCAS X-45 program is a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency/U.S. Air Force/U.S. Navy/Boeing effort to demonstrate the technical feasibility, military utility and operational value of an unmanned air combat system for the Air Force and the Navy. Operational missions for the services may include persistent strike; penetrating electronic attack; suppression of enemy air defenses; and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $30.5 billion business. It provides network-centric system solutions to its global military, government, and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in sustainment solutions and launch services.