Textron AirLand's Scorpion jet has successfully demonstrated close air support mission capability during its first weapons exercise.
The testing involved the deployment of three widely used weapon systems, Hydra-70 unguided 2.75-inch rockets, BAE Systems’ advanced precision kill weapon system (APKWS) and AGM-114F Hellfire missiles.
The weapons were guided to their targets using a ground-based laser designator system and then an airborne laser on the Scorpion‘s L-3 Wescam’s MX-15Di sensor suite, Textron said in a statement.
The weapons testing programme was conducted between 10 and 14 October in coordination with the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) organisation and the 586th Flight Test Squadron from Holloman Air Force Base (HAFB).
Textron Aviation Defense senior vice-president Tom Hammoor said: “The success of the first weapons capability exercise is a major milestone for the Scorpion programme as we continue to demonstrate its mission flexibility and multi-role capabilities.
“We could not be more pleased with the results of this exercise, thanks to the collaboration between our Scorpion team, the NAVSEA organisation and the Holloman Air Force Base.”
Flight test programme of the first Scorpion prototype is currently ongoing, while the maiden flight of the first production Scorpion is expected soon.
Textron AirLand’s Scorpion tactical aircraft has been designed to perform intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, close air support, armed reconnaissance, maritime and border patrol and jet training missions.
Image: Scorpion jet releasing an AGM-114F Hellfire missile. Photo: courtesy of Textron Inc.