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First successful aerial refueling of a drone

Friday, April 24, 2015 - 00:56

The bat-wing U.S. Navy drone that became the first autonomous airplane to take off and land on an aircraft carrier accomplishes yet another milestone, becoming the first unmanned aircraft to undergo aerial refueling. Ben Gruber reports.

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STORY: This is the first time an unmanned aircraft has been refueled in flight. This the latest first for the U.S. Navy's X-47B test aircraft. In 2013 it was the first UAV to take-off and land on an aircraft carrier. The refueling took place off the coast of the United States where a tanker jet pushed more 4,000 pounds of fuel into unmanned prototype. The U.S. Navy said the successful refueling will increase the range and flexibility of future unmanned aircraft platforms. But even with its list of successes, the future of the X-47B is still uncertain. The Navy's broader unmanned carrier aviation program is temporarily on hold as officials debate exactly what missions the planes should be able to perform.

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First successful aerial refueling of a drone

Friday, April 24, 2015 - 00:56