UAV flies for over a day
An unmanned aircraft system (UAS) has set an endurance record of over 25 hours in European airspace.
The EURO HAWK UAS set the endurance record on 8 August when it flew continuously for 25.3 hours, climbing to 58,600 ft over Manching Air Base, Germany.
EURO HAWK is built by Northrop Grumman Corporation, operating through its subsidiary Northrop Grumman ISS International Inc, and Cassidian (EADS Deutschland GmbH).
With a wingspan of over 130 ft (~40 m) - greater than many airliners - EURO HAWK can fly at altitudes of over 60,000 ft for more than 30 hrs. Payload is 3,000 lbs (1,360 kg) and loiter airspeed 310 knots. Ferry Range is 12,300 NM (22,780 km) and it has an on-station endurance of 24 hrs at 1,200 NM range.
The German EURO HAWK will be equipped with a new signals intelligence (SIGINT) mission system, providing standoff capability to detect electronic intelligence (ELINT) and comms intelligence (COMINT) emitters.
A ground station - comprising mission control and launch and recovery elements - will be provided together with a SIGINT ground station, which will receive and analyse data from the UAS.
EURO HAWK will replace retired (and manned) Breguet Atlantic aircraft, which were in service from 1972 to 2010. Current UAS testing will continue throughout September.
Details from Northrop Grumman below.