Large 757 Airplane-Size Navy Surveillance Drone in the Works

Geo Beats
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The United States Navy is testing a large surveillance drone that is almost the size of a Boeing 757 airplane.

The United States Navy is testing a large surveillance drone that is almost the size of a Boeing 757 airplane.

The Triton unmanned aircraft system, or UAS, has a 130 foot wingspan and is equipped with sensors providing real time intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, known as ISR, with a 360 degree view and a radius of 2 thousand nautical miles.

That range is further than any other drone competitors, and thanks to protection from lightning and special de-icing capabilities, the Triton can get closer to targets in rough conditions.

Mike Mackey, Northrop Grumman’s Triton UAS program director is quoted as saying: “During surveillance missions using Triton, Navy operators may spot a target of interest and order the aircraft to a lower altitude to make positive identification. The wing’s strength allows the aircraft to safely descend, sometimes through weather patterns, to complete this maneuver.”

There have already been nine test flights completed, with the aircraft reaching altitudes of 50 thousand feet for up to 9 point 4 hours.

Sixty-eight Triton drones are being manufactured by Northrop Grumman under a 1 point 16 billion dollar initial contract for the US Navy, with delivery now scheduled for 2017.

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