The United States Marine Corps (U. S. Marine Corps) has published a list of features that should have a promising attack drone. In fact, it is a lightweight version of the 5th generation F-35 fighter. The main idea is to replace, albeit an ultra-modern, but expensive machine, worth 120 million dollars, with a much cheaper drone, capable of taking off both from conventional airfields and from the deck of landing ships.
The drone called MUX will be multifunctional. Its tasks include early warning, surveillance, reconnaissance, electronic warfare, relaying communications. In addition, he will be entrusted with the functions of air support, escort of strike air groups and the delivery of goods.
The MUX, like the Huey helicopter, will be able to take off and land vertically. It will operate at an altitude of over 9000 m in a radius of about 1130 km, which can be increased by air refueling.
Despite the fact that the main function of MUX is "unarmed" support, the Marines want to see the entire arsenal of the F-35 on it - Hellfire anti-tank missiles, a weapon system for accurate target destruction, AGM-88E anti-radar missiles, guided high-precision bombs, missiles of the " air-to-air "short and medium range.
U. S. Marine Corps also wants MUX to provide an armed escort for the V-22 Osprey tiltrotor fleet during amphibious operations. Each of these vehicles can carry up to 24 Marines and fly at speeds in excess of 470 km / h.