The partnership between Northrop Grumman and the Korean defense industry achieved another milestone in April with the completion of the first two component orders on the Republic of Korea Global Hawk Program.
This spring, Korean Jig and Fixture delivered build-to-print aerospace grade precision machine parts for the first Republic of Korea Global Hawk. This comes in addition to the wire harness, which delivers electrical signals throughout the aircraft, which Firstec Company, Ltd. delivered earlier in the year.
“Both Firstec and KJF have been excellent partners in our mission to provide Korea with superior and valuable intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance technology,” said Mick Jaggers, vice president and program manager, Global Hawk, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems. “The contributions of these companies ensure a prominent role by Korea in the production of this aircraft. The Korean industry partners will be at the very heart of the delivered Korean Global Hawk.”
Northrop Grumman signed a memoranda of understanding with Firstec and KJF in 2013 to support the Global Hawk. Manufacturing of the first Republic of Korea Global Hawk aircraft is currently underway at Northrop Grumman’s Moss Point, Mississippi, facility. Final aircraft production will take place in Palmdale, California.
“Northrop Grumman actively supports its customers by leveraging Korea’s talent and resources to help build a more capable and competitive supply chain for Global Hawk,” said Gregory Thomas, program manager, autonomous systems global supply chain international, Northrop Grumman. “We seek to strengthen and develop the future economy of Korea through strategic industry partnerships such as these.”
Korea is a key U.S. partner in ensuring peace and stability in the East Asia region. The Northrop Grumman Global Hawk, which can fly for more than 30 hours at altitudes up to 60,000 feet, is ideally suited to monitor and deter regional threats in support of Korea’s defense forces.
The Global Hawk unmanned aircraft system has logged more than 180,000 flight hours, 75 percent of which were combat/operational missions. Korea purchased four Global Hawks under a foreign military sales procurement with the U.S. government awarded in December 2014.
Global Hawk supports military missions, anti-terrorism, anti-piracy, scientific and environmental work, as well as humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts anywhere in the world. The system was used following natural disasters in Haiti, Japan and the Republic of the Philippines to make damage assessments and allow first responders to pinpoint where people needed help the most.