Home » Aviation » Navy’s Osprey Will Be Called CMV-22B; Procurement To Begin In FY 2018

Navy’s Osprey Will Be Called CMV-22B; Procurement To Begin In FY 2018

MV-22 Osprey assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 163 launches from USS Makin Island (LHD-8) on Aug. 24, 2014. US Navy Photo

MV-22 Osprey assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 163 launches from USS Makin Island (LHD-8) on Aug. 24, 2014. US Navy Photo

The Navy’s variant of the V-22 Osprey that will serve as the future carrier onboard delivery (COD) aircraft has an official designation: CMV-22B.

The Navy announced one year ago that it would buy the V-22 – which is already used by Air Force special operators and has revolutionized how the Marine Corps operates at sea and ashore. The COD mission is currently carried out by the Northrop Grumman C-2A Greyhound turboprop plane, which carriers people, mail, supplies and more to the aircraft carrier from shore facilities.

The Navy previously intended to host a competition to replace the C-2A with a similar fixed-wing aircraft, but last year’s decision to use the Osprey allows the Navy to take advantage of a hot production line and a mature logistics and training infrastructure. The V-22 has also operated off the flight deck of Military Sealift Command supply ships during exercises, and the Navy could invest in certifying the V-22 to land on and take off from the flight decks of destroyers and other surface ships, making the V-22 a more flexible choice than a conventional fixed-wing plane, according to the service.

USNI News understands that the C-2A may have had some advantages over the Bell-Boeing V-22, such as being able to fly at higher altitudes. However, early COD replacement efforts may have indicated that replacing the old plane would be costlier than originally expected.

The Marines call their variant the MV-22, and the Air Force variant is the CV-22. The Navy ultimately designated its variant using both designators. According to an Air Force primer on aircraft designators, the C stands for cargo and means the plane is “designed to carry heavy cargo, passengers, and/or medical patients.” The M stands for multimission and “identifies aircraft specially configured to support special operations.” And the V signifies a vertical-takeoff or short-takeoff fixed-wing plane, such as the AV-8B.

Over the past year, documents in the Navy and Defense Department have referred to the Navy’s Osprey variant as the HV-22 – with the H denoting a rotary-wing rather than fixed-wing aircraft. However, the H designator also implies a search and rescue aircraft, and though the Osprey could conceivably participate in search and rescue missions, that is not included in the COD mission set.

The “CMV” designation is meant to best reflect the nature of the COD mission, which, according to a statement from Naval Air Systems Command, “is to provide the Joint Force Maritime Component Commander with time-critical, long-range aerial logistics support by transporting personnel, mail and priority cargo from advance bases to the sea base.”

To accomplish this mission, the CMV-22B will be the same as the MV-22, plus an extended-range fuel system, a high-frequency beyond line of sight radio and a public address system in the back of the aircraft.

The Navy’s program of record originally called for 48 planes total, but the Navy has since determined it only needs to buy 44. The NAVAIR statement says production on the CMV-22B will begin in Fiscal Year 2018, and aircraft deliveries will begin in 2020.

The Navy will pursue the three changes it needs via engineering change proposals to the existing MV-22 design. Those ECPs are not yet under contract, USNI News understands, but are planned for FY 2016 and should be finalized in the coming months.

  • Mauvais Garcon

    An operational ceiling of only 25,000 feet will not give the Osprey very reliable all weather capability. In many locales that is where you can expect maximum turbulence and maximum icing. Maybe a few C-2s should be held and evenly distributed to give coverage for vital deliveries.

  • @USS_Fallujah

    Can you actually land a -22 on a destroyer or cruiser helo deck, or are they going to sling cargo from the CVN or MSC Supply ship?

    • Secundius

      @USS. Fallujah.

      Only if the Ship is Rated for IT, and have a Thermion Barrier Imprinted to the Landing Area. Thermion, is a Thermal Protective Coating to protect the Hull Plating from the Thermal Downwash of the Turbo-Props produces ~ +3,092F. Thermion is rated for ~+5,700F, about that of a Acetylene Torch.

      Sorry, My Apologies to you “Mr. NotRizzo”…

  • mike46

    What a bummer. No more cat shots or arrested landings for the pax.

    • Secundius

      @ mike46.

      The British, wish to acquire ALL Existing Grumman C-2A Greyhound’s, and Convert them to Naval Gunship’s. And place them on the Queen Elizabeth and Price of Wales class Aircraft Carriers…

      • disqus_zommBwspv9

        on these C-2A have not they been given a service life extension already? Was trying to find out how long they have been in service and when the assembly line was closed. I am seeing conflicting dates but all of the dates appears to be in the 1990’s

        • Secundius

          @ Sailboater.

          36 C-2A(R)’s of the 58 built were given Service Life Extensions of 15,000-hours or ~2027 Calendar Date…

  • PolicyWonk

    Too bad the Navy, unlike the USMC, has no plan to extend the ’22 to have any aerial refueling capability: they certainly need it!

  • disqus_zommBwspv9

    In giving up the Greyhound, doesn’t it limit the range of the carriers on how far they can operate from land? While 300 miles is not much it can make a different if the carrier needs to leave station to retrieve the new COD

    • USNVO

      Well, besides the fact that an Osprey could refuel in flight or even Lilly pad off another platform if it was a really critical requirement, it is not like a carrier needs a daily COD flight. It is kind of like the whole F-135 argument. Couldn’t the CVN just carry a few spares, it is not like they fail everyday? The impact is basically zero although it may make a change in how business is conducted, and horror of horrors the mail may be delayed a couple of days.

  • old guy

    The politics of the V-22 is staggering. Combine high cost, (twice that of an equivalent compound helo), lousy performance in weather, high maintenance and low availability, and you have the epitome of a LOBBYIST’s dream. Congress should hide its collective, corrupt head. Take the BIG 4 junkers (V-22, F35, DD1000 and LCS) out of the equation and maybe we can get an affordable, efficient order of battle.

  • dpaul

    The Navy is under ordering these revolutionary aircraft, they need at least one hundred and maybe even more than that.

  • Tom McNabb

    Nevermind the facts, The Greyhound is faster, flies much higher, is pressurized, has a much larger cargo hold capable of carrying the latest fighter jet engines and has a much longer range, all critical components that let the carrier operate further from shores even in bad weather. Osprey can land on more than just the Carrier is the sales pitch but I’m leery of that statement and decided to follow the money. What State is the United States President from that got us balls deep into the last two Wars? Lindon Johnson and George Bush. Texas!!! Where is Bell based? Texas!!! Always follow the money and who benefiting. C-2B proposal was 55 Million per bird yet somehow Grumman/Northrop where shunned for a POS.