Defense

January 13, 2014

Unmanned demo aircraft exceeds 10,000 combat flight hours

Navy photograph Navy photograph
The Navyís unmanned RQ-4A Broad Area Maritime Surveillance Demonstrator (BAMS-D) surpassed 10,000 flight hours in December 2013 in support of operations in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.

Now entering its sixth year of deployment, BAMS-D provides intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance support to the fleet and is†used to collect lessons learned for its successor, the MQ-4C Triton unmanned air system.

ìThis was originally intended to be a six-month concept demonstration,î said Capt. Jim Hoke, program manager for the Persistent Maritime Unmanned Aircraft System program office (PMA-262), who oversees the BAMS-D program. ìSix years later, the tempo of operations and demand for products from BAMS-D has remained steady and the deployment has been extended indefinitely.î

Flown by both Navy and contractor personnel, the asset is controlled from Patuxent River and operated under Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 2, Commander, Task Force 57 in theater.

In a typical mission, the aircraft normally tracks surface shipping and images littoral targets of naval interest in the CENTCOM AOR, said Mike McDaniel, the former BAMS-D test director, who is now Tritonís test director.† Within minutes, crew members analyze these tracks and images and then send them out to units worldwide.

ìThe speed of delivery, combined with the enormous quantity of information collected on each flight, has made BAMS-D invaluable to the fleet,î he said.

The Navy originally acquired two RQ-4A aircraft to build Navy experience in operating large unmanned aircraft and develop tactics and doctrine for the Triton program.† RQ-4A can fly at altitudes above 50,000 feet for typically a 24-hour duration. To date, the Navyís RQ-4A fleet has flown more than 750 sorties during test and real-world operations and has flown a total of 12,000 hours.




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


 
 

 

Headlines April 17, 2015

News: Army extends benefits to Hood shooting victims - The Army will provide “all possible benefits” to victims of the 2009 Fort Hood shooting who recently were awarded the Purple Heart, the service announced April 16.   Business: Rolls-Royce lands biggest deal in its 109-year history - U.K. engineering company Rolls-Royce has won the largest order in...
 
 

News Briefs April 17, 2015

Army orders financial benefits for 2009 Fort Hood victims Dozens of soldiers and surviving family members of the 2009 Fort Hood, Texas, shooting are receiving additional Army pay that they felt was long overdue. The announcement from Army Sec. John McHugh April 16 comes a week after 36 Purple Hearts were awarded to victims and...
 
 
NASA illustration

NASA awards radiation challenge winners, launches next round

NASA illustration This illustration depicts our heliosphere, showing the approximate locations of Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 spacecraft. Galactic cosmic rays originate outside the heliosphere and stream in uniformly from all direc...
 

 

U.S. Air Force completes operational testing on Raytheon’s MALD-J

Raytheon and the U.S. Air Force successfully completed operational tests of Miniature Air Launched Decoy-Jammer, satisfying all requirements to attain Initial Operational Capability. “MALD-J’s unique capabilities have been proven in 42 successful flight tests during the last two years and brought us closer to full rate production,” said Mike Jarrett, vice president of Raytheon...
 
 

Northrop Grumman to expand North Dakota presence

In partnership with local leadership, Northrop Grumman confirmed its dedication to the future of unmanned systems development in the Red River Valley region by signing a lease agreement to anchor the new Grand Sky Technology Park in Grand Forks County. Northrop Grumman is working to identify specialized opportunities for the Grand Sky facility. The opportunities,...
 
 

Raytheon awarded more than $2 billion for an International Patriot system

Raytheon announced April 17 it has been awarded a contract worth over $2.0 billion to deliver the combat-proven Patriot Air and Missile Defense System to an undisclosed international customer. The contract, awarded April 2, 2015, and booked in the second quarter as a direct commercial sale, includes fully digitized new-production Patriot fire units with the...
 




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>