2 US Aircraft Carriers May Get An Answer To China's 'Carrier Killer' Missile

Gear
A concept drawing for the UClass program Lockheed Martin claims is 'still relevant' for the MQ-25 Stingray
Photo via DoD

The Navy's USS Dwight D. Eisenhower and USS George H.W. Bush aircraft carriers may field the MQ-25A Stingray, the unmanned aerial tanker that will extend the range of U.S. carrier aircraft and counter long-range threats to U.S. ships like China's "carrier killer" missile, the U.S. Naval Institute reports.


Citing multiple sources within the Navy, the Naval Institute reports that the two carriers will get upgrades to control the drone, and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson wants the Stingray on carrier decks by 2019.

Not only would the Stingray extend the range of carrier-based aircraft, it would lessen the burden on the heavily taxed F/A-18 Super Hornets, which currently fly refueling missions for the Navy.

Though the report shows the Navy's top leadership obviously is behind the Stingray in concept and in principal, it hasn't even been built yet.

The drone often pictured alongside articles about the Stingray isn't actually the MQ-25A Stingray, but another carrier-based drone, the X-47B.

X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System Demonstrator (UCAS-D, a previous name for the MQ-25A) launches from an aircraft carrierPhoto via DoD

A concept image shared by Lockheed Martin shows a very different aircraft with propellers.

A Navy spokesperson told Business Insider it was too early to comment on when or where the Stingray would eventually test and deploy. The Navy hasn't even put out a request for proposal on building the Stingray yet.

Rising anti-access/area-denial threats from Russia and China could possibly explain the Navy's rush for an as-of-yet non-existent platform. Additionally, North Korea has made strides toward fielding anti-ship weapons that could threaten the Navy near its shores.

WATCH NEXT: 

More from Business Insider: 

U.S. Air Force/Tech. Sgt. Brian Kimball

Editor's Note: This article by Oriana Pawlyk originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

Calling aviation geeks in New York City: The British are coming.

In their first visit to the United States since 2008, the Royal Air Force "Red Arrows" will perform an aerial demonstration next week over the Hudson River, according to an Air Force news release. F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, the Air Force Thunderbirds and Navy Blue Angels demonstration teams will also be part of the show.

Read More Show Less
U.S. Air National Guard/Staff Sgt. Michelle Y. Alvarez-Rea

Frances and Efrain Santiago, natives of Puerto Rico, wanted to show their support last month for protesters back home seeking to oust the island's governor.

The couple flew the flag of Puerto Rico on the garage of their Kissimmee home. It ticked off the homeowners association.

Someone from the Rolling Hills Estates Homeowners Association left a letter at their home, citing a "flag violation" and warning: "Please rectify the listed violation or you may incur a fine."

Frances Santiago, 38, an Army veteran, demanded to know why.

Read More Show Less
Todd Rosenberg/AP

A West Point graduate received a waiver from the U.S. Army to sign with the Philadelphia Eagles on Friday, and play in the NFL while serving as an active-duty soldier.

The waiver for 2nd Lt. Brett Toth was first reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter, who said that Toth signed a three-year deal with the Eagles. Toth graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 2018.

Read More Show Less
Indiana National Guard

The Indiana National Guard soldier who was killed on Thursday in a training accident at Fort Hood has been identified as 29-year-old Staff Sgt. Andrew Michael St. John, of Greenwood, Indiana.

Read More Show Less

QUETTA, Pakistan/KABUL (Reuters) - The brother of the leader of the Afghan Taliban was among at least four people killed in a bomb blast at a mosque in Pakistan on Friday, two Taliban sources told Reuters, an attack that could affect efforts to end the Afghan war.

Read More Show Less