PATUXENT RIVER, Md., Sept. 6 (UPI) -- Bell Boeing's V-22 tilt-rotor transport aircraft has completed an initial test for use as an aerial refueling platform.
The test, conducted over north Texas, involved a V-22 Osprey being outfitted with a prototype aerial refueling system.
The system's refueling drogue was deployed successfully as two fighter aircraft flew behind the V-22.
"Adding aerial refueling tanker capability to the V-22 will enable operators to execute a wider variety of missions with greater flexibility and autonomy," said Vince Tobin, Bell Boeing V-22 program director. "This will save time and money by maximizing the efficient use of aircraft and personnel."
Future tests of the V-22 vertical takeoff and landing aircraft will involve putting fighters in a fuel-receiving position directly behind the V-22, connection to receiver aircraft with the refueling drogue actual refueling of aircraft in flight, the company said.
The V-22 Osprey is operated by both the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Air Force.