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The GHMD system will also be used to further develop long endurance unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) concept of operations (CONOPS) and tactics, techniques and procedures (TTP).
The Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) acquired two Global Hawk aircraft as part of the GHMD project administered by the Program Executive Office for Strike Weapons and Unmanned Aviation (PEO(W)) and its subordinate Program Management Office for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (PMA-263).
These GHMD test UAVs are aimed at developing Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS) systems and concepts of operations.
Of nine production Block 10 RQ-4As, three are operated from a base in the United Arab Emirates, two are used by the US Navy in the Global Hawk Maritime Demonstration (GHMD) programme and two Nasa aircraft are being modified as a tanker and receiver for in-flight refuelling trials.
In early February, Northrop Grumman (San Diego, CA) was awarded a $185.2-million contract to kick off the US Navy's Global Hawk Maritime Demonstration (GHMD) program.
"I think that was the thing that said that there was some utility for Global Hawk for naval missions." Subsequent phases of development under the GHMD progr am could see the UAV equipped with a signals-intelligence capability, the APY-6 radar, and a turreted EO/IR sensor
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- Ghoghardiha Prakhand Swarajya Vikas Sangh