Tech

May 31, 2013

NASA, Northrop Grumman continue partnership for science

Their bulbous noses almost touching, NASA’s two Global Hawks line up nose-to-nose on the ramp at NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center on Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Developed by Northrop Grumman, the two autonomously operated unmanned aircraft are flown on long-duration environmental science missions.

NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center and the Northrop Grumman have extended a no-cost agreement that enables NASA’s Science Mission Directorate to conduct Earth science research with the Northrop Grumman-developed RQ-4 Global Hawk unmanned aircraft system.

The original five-year Space Act Agreement has been extended for an additional five years through April 30, 2018.

Under the original agreement that was effective May 1, 2008, NASA and Northrop Grumman returned two pre-production Global Hawk aircraft to flight status. Northrop Grumman shares in their use to conduct its own flight demonstrations for expanded markets, missions and airborne capabilities, including integration of unmanned aircraft systems into the national airspace.

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center support scientists Andrew Kupchock (top left) and Patrick Selmer (bottom left) assist Northrop Grumman mechanics Tom Ripley (top right) and Steve Crowell in installation of Goddard’s Cloud Physics Lidar into the front compartment of a NASA Global Hawk. The CPL measured cloud structure and aerosols such as dust, sea salt and smoke particles during NASA’s 2012 Hurricane and Severe Sentinel mission.

Under the partnership, a permanent ground control station was built at Dryden. A portable ground control station was then constructed and has been used for deployment of a Global Hawk to NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia in support of a 2012 hurricane study. Pilots controlled the aircraft for the first time from both locations.

The two Global Hawk aircraft, among the first seven built during the original Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration program sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, were transferred to NASA Dryden from the U.S. Air Force in September 2007. NASA acquired the two aircraft for research activities supporting its Airborne Science Program.

The Global Hawk is a fully autonomous, high-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aircraft system that can fly up to 65,000 feet for more than 30 hours at a time. The aircraft has a range of 11,000 nautical miles. Its endurance and range allow for a non-stop flight from NASA Dryden in Southern California to the North Pole and allow it to loiter for up to seven hours over the polar region before returning to its home base.

The Earth Science Division of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate is capitalizing on the range and dwell time of the Global Hawk for atmospheric chemistry and radiation science missions in addition to hurricane research. NASA’s Genesis and Rapid Intensification and Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel missions helped researchers investigate the development and intensification of hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean.
Data was also collected over winter storms in the Pacific and Arctic region. Scientists for the multi-year Airborne Tropical Tropopause Experiment study the composition of the tropopause over the Pacific.

In addition to the advancement of science, the Global Hawk also has many other potential applications including disaster support capabilities and development of advanced unmanned aircraft systems technologies.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines September 29, 2014

News: U.S. military limits warplanes used for Islamic State bombingsĀ - The U.S. is relying mostly on warplanes already positioned in the region for its air war against the Islamic State, as opposed to dispatching a major buildup of aerial forces that happened in previous campaigns.   Business: At DOD, it’s use-it-or-lose-it seasonĀ - As fiscal 2014...
 
 

News Briefs September 29, 2014

Navy awards ship design grant to UNO The University of New Orleans has received a $210,000 grant from the Navy s Office of Naval Research to test information gathering and analysis techniques intended to improve warship design. The goal for warship designers is to produce a vessel that can be repurposed numerous times throughout its...
 
 
Courtesy photograph

TACP-M ties it all together

Air National Guard photograph by SSgt. Lealan Buehrer Tactical air control party specialists with the 169th Air Support Operations Squadron survey an enemy-controlled landing zone before calling in close-air support Aug. 14, 20...
 

 
Air Force photograph by A1C Thomas Spangler

Nellis aggressor squadron inactivated

Air Force photograph by A1C Thomas Spangler SSgt. Justin White signals to Maj. Sam Joplin to begin taxiing a 65th Aggressor Squadron F-15 Eagle to the runway Sept. 18, 2014, at Nellis Air Force Base Nev. The roles and responsib...
 
 
Army photograph by SSgt. Mary S. Katzenberger

82nd Airborne helps commemorate 70th Anniversary of Operation Market Garden

Army photograph by SSgt. Mary S. Katzenberger A paratrooper assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division, reflects near the grave of a British paratrooper at the Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery, Sept. 14, 2014, in the Netherlands. The...
 
 

Raytheon awarded $251 million Tomahawk missile contract

The U.S. Navy has awarded Raytheon a $251 million contract to procure Tomahawk Block IV tactical cruise missiles for fiscal year 2014 with an option for 2015. The contract calls for Raytheon to build and deliver Tomahawk Block IV cruise missiles to the U.S. Navy and U.K. Royal Navy. Raytheon will also conduct flight tests...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>