This Strange Looking Thing Could Transform the U.S. Navy

Charlie Gao

On Feb 10, 2020, the U.S. Navy received its first tiltrotor CMV-22B aircraft. The CMV-22B is the Navy’s version of the V-22 currently in use by the US Marine Corps and U.S. Air Force. While the V-22 was primarily designed for the Marine Corps to accelerate ship-to-shore airborne transport, its unique tiltrotor characteristics have potential boons for the Navy as well.

However, the primary mission of the CMV-22B is a carrier onboard delivery (COD), currently being performed by the Navy’s current fleet of C-2A Greyhounds. However, the Greyhounds were designed in the 1960s, and despite updates they are not up to the demands of supplying modern carriers. While some other cargo aircraft, like the C-130, survive well into the modern era via updates, the mission-specific nature of the COD role means that space is at a premium on COD aircraft. One key ability that the CMV-22B brings to the COD role is the ability to bring a replacement F-35 engine on board.

The CMV-22B also has modifications compared to the Marine MV-22B to improve its functionality as a COD aircraft. It features improved lighting for loading and unloading, a public address system for passengers, and an expanded internal fuel tank for extended range. The wings are also revised to allow for greater carrying weight.

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