Northrop Grumman Puts Fire Scout UAV on Final Approach

Thursday, October 16, 2003
In preparation for an historic first shipboard landing by the U.S. Navy's RQ-8A Fire Scout vertical takeoff and landing tactical unmanned air vehicle, Northrop Grumman Corporation conducted two successful test flights of the UAV in late August. The flights were made between Pt. Mugu Naval Air Station, Calif., and the USS Denver underway at sea. During both flights, air vehicle and mission payload operators aboard the Denver used the Raytheon-developed Tactical Control System (TCS) software and the Navy's S-280 ground control station to control the Fire Scout and its payload from launch to recovery. Fire Scout is the first UAV system to be fully TCS compliant. "The recent test flights helped us ensure that every aspect of the Fire Scout operation is consistent with the requirements of the shipboard environment," said Tom Soard, Northrop Grumman's Fire Scout program manager. "It's part of our commitment to demonstrate the vital surveillance and reconnaissance role that unmanned air vehicles can play in the Navy's future littoral force structure." Northrop Grumman's Integrated Systems sector leads the Fire Scout test team. The team also includes the crew of the Denver; as well as representatives from the Naval Air Systems Command and PMA-263 (the U.S. Navy's UAV program office), and the Raytheon Company. Northrop Grumman's Electronic Systems sector, headquartered in Baltimore, provides the Fire Scout's payload, which consists of electro-optical and infrared sensors and a laser designator/range finder. The team plans to conduct precision approaches to the Denver and the first shipboard landings later this fall. The first Fire Scout test flight, conducted Aug. 21, served as a functional check flight. It occurred near the Denver and lasted approximately 20 minutes. During a 1-1/2 hour second flight conducted Aug. 23, the UAV made several approaches to the Denver and responded successfully to several intentional, operator-directed wave-offs. The second flight also demonstrated Fire Scout's ability to fly navigation and approach routes relative to a moving platform. The Fire Scout system is in development and low-rate initial production by Northrop Grumman for Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md. It can serve as a force multiplier for Navy forces at sea and U.S. Marine Corps forces ashore. The air vehicle, which can operate at altitudes up to 20,000 feet, watches for threats within 150 nautical miles of its ground control station. The system also can direct Navy and Marine weapons accurately to a target either by using its laser designator or by providing precise target location coordinates.
Maritime Reporter September 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Marine Propulsion

ABB's 25th Year in Dubai

ABB Turbocharging is celebrating its 25th anniversary in UAE. Established in 1989 in Dubai, ABB has grown to become a fully-fledged service station capable

Moore Stephens Expects Vessel Operating Cost to Rise

Vessel operating costs are expected to rise by almost three per cent in both 2014 and 2015, according to a new survey by international accountant and shipping consultant Moore Stephens.

Wärtsilä Steerable Thruster Gets Class Approval

DNV-GL approved the design of the Wärtsilä WST-14 thruster, significant as approval was granted based on a thruster design that has yet to be introduced into full series production.

Navy

Navy to Commission Submarine North Dakota

The Navy will commission its newest attack submarine North Dakota, during a ceremony Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014, at Submarine Base New London in Groton, Connecticut.

US Navy CNO: Photo of the Day

Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert receives a system update brief in the combat information center aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile

U.S. Navy Contracts 12 Rapid Response Skimmers

Kvichak Marine won a US Navy contract for 12 30-ft.Rapid Response Skimmers (RRS) for delivery over the next 18 months, with options for up to 30 additional skimmers to be delivered through 2019.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Pod Propulsion Salvage Ship Repair Ship Simulators Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1238 sec (8 req/sec)