Northrop Grumman Corporation has ferried its fifth NATO Alliance Ground Surveillance (AGS) aircraft, via a non-stop transatlantic flight from Palmdale, California to Sigonella Air Base, Sigonella, Italy.
According to the company, the air vehicle is the last of five NATO RQ-4D aircraft, thus completing deliveries to the Main Operating Base (MOB) of the NATO AGS system of systems comprised of aircraft, ground, and support segments. Work remains to complete Handover of the AGS System to the NATO AGS Force (NAGSF).
“Once the NATO AGS system achieves Handover, NATO Commanders will have greater flexibility and redundancy to support the mission of protecting ground troops, civilian populations and international borders in peacetime and times of conflict as well as humanitarian missions during natural disasters,” said Jane Bishop, vice president and general manager, autonomous systems, Northrop Grumman.
The NATO AGS RQ-4D is based on the U.S. Air Force wide area surveillance Global Hawk. The high-altitude, long-endurance unmanned NATO AGS system, which includes the multi-platform radar technology insertion program radar, is intended to provides leading-edge intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) capability to deliver near real-time situational awareness 24 hours a day, seven days a week.