NASHUA, N.H. — BAE Systems has been awarded contracts by Boeing Co. to supply the Vehicle Management Control System (VMCS) and Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) System for the MQ-25 unmanned aerial vehicle, BAE said in a release.
“BAE Systems leads the industry in high-integrity fly-by-wire and mission-critical IFF technologies,” said Corin Beck, director of military aircraft systems at BAE Systems. “Our relationship with Boeing started more than four decades ago and has resulted in aircraft that have some of the most advanced avionics and reduced size transponders in the world.”
The VMCS will control all flight surfaces and perform overall vehicle management duties for the MQ-25. The IFF product ensures operation in contested environments by reliably identifying both coalition and enemy vehicles.
The MQ-25 will be the U.S. Navy’s first operational carrier-based unmanned aircraft and is designed to provide a much-needed refueling capability. The contract supports Boeing’s engineering and manufacturing development program to provide four MQ-25 aircraft to the Navy for Initial Operational Capability by 2024.
“The MQ-25 program is vital because it will help the U.S. Navy extend the range of the carrier air wing, and Boeing and our industry team is all-in on delivering this capability,” said Dave Bujold, Boeing’s MQ-25 program director. “The work we’re doing is also foundational for the future of Boeing — where we’re building autonomous systems from seabed to space.”