Italeri ITA48165 USN Northrop Grumman X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System - Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland (1:100)
"The UCAS-D is focused on demonstrating the feasibility of operating an aircraft carrier-sized unmanned system in the harsh carrier environment."
- Rear Admiral Mat Winter, Program Executive Officer, Unmanned Aviation and Strike Weapons
The Northrop Grumman X-47B is a demonstration unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV) designed for carrier-based operations. Developed by the American defense technology company Northrop Grumman, the X-47 project began as part of DARPA's J-UCAS program, and is now part of the United States Navy's Unmanned Combat Air System Demonstration (UCAS-D) program. The X-47B first flew in 2011, and as of 2013, it is undergoing flight testing, having successfully performed a series of land- and carrier-based demonstrations. Northrop Grumman intends to develop the prototype X-47B into a battlefield-ready aircraft, the Unmanned Carrier-Launched Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) system, which will enter service by 2019.
Pictured here is a 1:100 scale diecast replica of a US Navy Northrop Grumman X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System designed for carrier operations and indergoing testing at the Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland.
Wingspan: 8 inches
Length: 1-3/4 inches
Release Date: June 2014
Historical Account: "Carrier Ops" - The X-47B is a tailless, autonomous, unmanned aircraft that Northrop Grumman is developing and testing for the Navys UCAS Demonstration program. X-47B is the first fixed-wing unmanned system designed to operate from a Navy aircraft carrier.
The Navy and Northrop Grumman conducted first flight of the X-47B in February 2011 at Edwards AFB. Since then, the aircraft has undergone a series of flight tests demonstrating its performance under a variety of conditions.
The combined Navy/industry UCAS-D team will conduct shore-based carrier suitability tests at Pax River in 2012. Tests will verify the X-47B's ability to communicate with the aircraft carrier and to operate safely and effectively with the ship's catapult and arresting gear.
Testing at Pax River will be conducted following stringent flight safety procedures and will be conducted within restricted airspace. The first X-47B flight at Pax River is planned for spring 2012. A second X-47B aircraft is also scheduled to arrive early next year.