CV-22 Osprey

The CV-22 Osprey is a tiltrotor aircraft that combines the vertical takeoff, hover and vertical landing qualities of a helicopter with the long-range, fuel efficiency and speed characteristics of a turboprop aircraft. The mission of the CV-22 is to conduct long-range infiltration, exfiltration and resupply missions for special operations forces.

This versatile, self-deployable aircraft offers increased speed and range over other rotary-wing aircraft, enabling Air Force Special Operations Command aircrews to execute long-range special operations missions. The CV-22 can perform missions that normally would require both fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft. The CV-22 takes off vertically and, once airborne, the nacelles (engine and prop-rotor group) on each wing can rotate into a forward position.

The CV-22 is equipped with integrated threat countermeasures, terrain-following radar, forward-looking infrared sensor and other systems that allow it to operate in various austere conditions.


The CV-22 is the Special Operation Forces variant of the U.S. Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey. The first two test aircraft were delivered to Edwards Air Force Base, California in September 2000. The 58th Special Operations Wing at Kirtland AFB, New Mexico began CV-22 aircrew training with the first two production aircraft in August 2006.

The first operational CV-22 was delivered to Air Force Special Operations Command in January 2007. Initial operational capability was achieved in 2009. A total of 54 CV-22 aircraft are scheduled to be delivered by the end of 2021.

General characteristics
Primary function: Special operations forces long-range infiltration, exfiltration and resupply
Builders: Bell Helicopter Textron Inc., Amarillo, Texas; Boeing Company, Defense and Space Group, Helicopter Division, Philadelphia
Deployment date: 2006
Propulsion: Two Rolls-Royce Liberty AE1107C engines
Thrust: more than 6,200 shaft horsepower per engine
Length: 57’ 4”
Height: 22’ 1”
Wingspan: 83’ 10”
Weight: maximum gross 60,500 pounds (self-deployment); 57,000 pounds (STOL); 52,600 (VTOL)
Speed: maximum 280 knots
Ceiling: 25,000 feet (7,620 meters)
Range: combat radius of 500 nautical miles with one internal auxiliary fuel tank
Crew: four (pilot, copilot and two flight engineers)
Program of Record: 54 aircraft for the Air Force
Rotor diameter: 38 feet
Armament: one .50-caliber machine gun on ramp
Payload: 24 personnel (seated), 32 personnel (floor loaded) or 10,000 pounds of cargo
Unit cost: $90 million

Point of contact:
AFSOC Public Affairs,, (850) 884-5515

(Current as of August 2020)