US Navy orders three more MQ-25s

The US Navy has exercised a contract option to procure an additional three MQ-25A Stingray unmanned air-to-air refuelling aircraft.

The contract modification – worth US$84.7m – was awarded to Boeing on April 2 and is expected to be completed by August 2024.

MQ-25A [Boeing] #1
The first MQ-25A prototype - known as T1, registration N234MQ - in flight. Boeing

Work on the contract will take place across the continental US, with the majority being performed at Boeing’s facility in St Louis, Missouri. The contracting activity is being led by Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) at Naval Air Station (NAS) Patuxent River, Maryland.

Boeing’s MQ-25A design was selected by the US Navy in August 2018 and the platform first flew last September 19. The air arm currently has seven of the unmanned air-to-air refuelling vehicles on order. The Stingray platform will be able to operate from the navy’s aircraft carriers, being integrated into carrier air wings (CVWs) in the future.

To read more about the development of the MQ-25A, you can read our feature, Swimming with Stingrays by following the link.