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Alameda-based Technology Takes Flight in U.S. Navy Drone

Alameda-based Wind River provides key technology for the X-47B unmanned aircraft.

Alameda-based Wind River provides key technology for the X-47B unmanned aircraft.

Alameda-based Wind River announced this week that its software is key technology in Northrop Grumman’s X-47B drone aircraft, and supported a successful launch and recovery of the unmanned aircraft from a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier.

The drone was launched by catapult this week from the deck of the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush and landed on the deck of the ship later. Previous tests involved launching from the ship by landing on ground.

The X-47B is the first tailless, autonomous, unmanned aircraft to be developed for carrier operations, and is part of the U.S. Navy’s Unmanned Combat Air System Carrier Demonstration (UCAS-D) program.

“Wind River provides the trusted systems necessary to rapidly create, deploy, and maintain critical applications, as well as satisfy complex mission-critical requirements for next-generation intelligent systems like the X-47B,” said Chip Downing, senior director of aerospace and defense at Wind River. “Wind River is honored to be part of the UCAS-D industry team responsible for this groundbreaking military program, which is paving the way for the future of carrier-based autonomous systems technology.”

Carl Johnson, vice president and Navy UCAS program manager for Northrop Grumman’s Aerospace Systems sector, commented, “The catapult launch and landing of the X-47B are historic milestones for the Navy, Northrop Grumman, and Wind River, whose technology has been critical to the success of this program. We look forward to continued collaboration and future achievements with the UCAS-D industry team.”

A previous test launch of the aircraft was recorded in the video provided by Wind River, below.

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