Boeing rolls out bigger, badder Phantom Ray [... or not/updated]

Update: Um, oops. A Boeing spokesman tells me both pictures below show the exact same aircraft. The picture Boeing released last year was obviously distorted. So the wingspan, fuselage length and chord of the aircraft in both photos are identical, Boeing says. If you’re wondering why Boeing decided to stage a second roll-out for the same aircraft, well, me too! 

Copyright: Boeing

Boeing called the Phantom Ray an extension of the X-45C, but now it’s clear the difference between the two aircraft is dramatic. See X-45C photo below.  

The Phantom Ray makes the X-45C look almost puny by comparison, although the latter represented the original vision of DARPA’s joint unmanned combat air systems (JUCAS) program before it was canceled.

Phantom ray specifications:

General Characteristics:



Gross Weight:

36 ft  (10.9 m)

50 ft (15.2 m)

36,500 lb  (16,556 kg)

Operating Altitude:

40,000 ft (12,192 m)

Cruise Mach:

0.8 (614 mph-988 km/h)



Read Boeing’s new feature article on Phantom Ray here.


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3 Responses to Boeing rolls out bigger, badder Phantom Ray [... or not/updated]

  1. Mike 10 May, 2010 at 11:50 pm #

    what a expert from boeing gentleman. another tomcat which variable-sweep wing unveiled or too handled photoshop.

  2. SMSgt Mac 11 May, 2010 at 2:18 am #

    Ahhh. Explains alot. The new photo reflects a planform generally considered better optimized for loitering than cruising. Dang, I of course was hoping the first photo geometry was correct.

  3. Jon 12 May, 2010 at 12:41 am #

    It could have the same mold line.
    One photo can be deformed, no big deal. I’m just a amateur photograph but know that.

    It could …

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