Bell and Boeing have flown the CMV-22B Osprey, the latest variant of the US Navy’s tiltrotor aircraft, for the first time at Bell’s Amarillo Assembly Center in Texas, USA.
The CMV-22B is replacing the C-2A Greyhound currently used by the US Navy for transporting personnel, mail, supplies and high-priority cargo from shore bases to aircraft carriers at sea. Bell and Boeing have designed the US Navy variant specifically for carrier fleet operations by providing increased fuel capacity for the extended range requirement of up to 1,165 nautical miles.
Chris Gehler, Bell V-22 vice president and Bell Boeing deputy program director said, “The first flight of the Navy’s CMV-22B marks a significant milestone for the V-22 program and for Naval Aviation. The Osprey has always been a revolutionary aircraft, and we look forward to continuing to support the evolving needs of the Navy with advanced tiltrotor capabilities.”
Bell Boeing is expected to deliver the first CMV-22B to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (HX) 21 in early 2020 for developmental test.
The CMV-22B joins the MV-22 and CV-22 tiltrotors already used by the US Navy and US Air Force.