Triumph Group has received a contract to supply critical hydraulic system components for the US Navy’s MQ-25 unmanned aerial refuelling programme.

The contract was awarded by Boeing and requires Triumph Integrated Systems to provide components for the hydraulic systems used in the landing gear and the MQ-25 aircraft’s arresting systems.

The Boeing-built MQ-25 is the US Navy’s first operational carrier-based unmanned aircraft. It can provide refuelling capability to extend the combat range of F/A-18 Super Hornet, EA-18G Growler, and F-35C fighter jets.

In August last year, Boeing received an engineering and manufacturing development contract to build and deliver four MQ-25 aircraft to the US Navy. Initial operational capability is expected by 2024.

“These systems play a critical role in ensuring consistent operational performance of the aircraft to support the mission.”

Triumph Integrated Systems executive vice-president Frank Dubey said: “Triumph Group is proud to be selected by Boeing to support the US Navy’s unmanned aerial refuelling programme and provide a variety of hydraulic subsystems used in the flight controls, landing gear, aerial refuelling and arresting systems of the MQ-25.

“These systems play a critical role in ensuring consistent operational performance of the aircraft to support the mission. We look forward to working with Boeing on the MQ-25 programme through to production.”

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The company noted that the latest contract will help sustain jobs within the Integrated Systems’ Fluid Power and Actuation operating company.

Boeing MQ-25 programme director Dave Bujold said: “The MQ-25 programme is vital because it will help the US Navy extend the range of the carrier air wing, and Boeing and our industry team is all-in on delivering this capability.

“The work we’re doing is also foundational for the future of Boeing, where we’re building autonomous systems from seabed to space.”

Boeing intends to conduct flight testing with its MQ-25 EMD test asset this year.

The test aircraft will provide an early learning and discovery opportunity to the company to advance the development of major systems and software for the programme.