UAV Ably Supporting the Global War on Terrorism
Corporation's RQ-4 Global Hawk reached 4,000 combat hours on March
23 during an operational mission in support of the war on
Performing nearly continuous combat service with the U.S. Air
Force since 2001, the high-altitude, long-endurance unmanned
reconnaissance system achieved the milestone largely through the
exceptional performance of one air vehicle operating in theater.
Overall, the system has achieved more than 6,500 total flight hours
accumulated by multiple aircraft.
"Reaching 4,000 combat hours is continued proof of the system's
reliability and its value to our men and women in combat," said
George Guerra, director of Northrop Grumman's Air Force Global Hawk
program. "Early on, the Air Force placed a great deal of confidence
in Global Hawk by pressing it into service supporting combat
operations well ahead of schedule. Since its debut in theater, the
system has provided unprecedented support to our fighting forces on
the ground, at sea and in the air."
Operating autonomously from take-off to landing, flying at an
altitude of 65,000 and with an endurance of more than 30 hours, the
Global Hawk provides intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance
information to the warfighter in near real time.
The program is currently contracted by the Air Force and
produced by Northrop Grumman's Integrated Systems sector. The
U.S. Navy also plans to procure Global Hawk to demonstrate maritime
surveillance capabilities to the fleet later this year.
Northrop Grumman is the leading producer of unmanned systems for
the U.S. military with a portfolio that spans a broad spectrum of
capabilities. Current systems in service, production or development
include the combat-proven U.S. Army RQ-5 Hunter unmanned
reconnaissance system currently supporting the global war on
terrorism; the BQM-34 and BQM-74 aerial targets; the RQ-8 Fire
Scout vertical take-off and landing tactical UAV in low-rate
initial production for the U.S. Navy and for U.S. Army Future
Combat Systems Class IV unmanned air vehicle program; the
multi-role Hunter II proposed for the Army's next-generation,
extended-range, multi-purpose UAV program; the medium-altitude,
long-endurance, multi-role Model 395; and the X-47 Joint Unmanned
Combat Air Systems for the Defense Advanced Research Projects
Agency, Air Force and Navy.