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10:30 AM, January 31, 2019
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MQ-8C Fire Scout

Northrop Grumman has won $55 million modification contract to supply five Fire Scout MQ-8C unmanned air systems and two lightweight fuel cells to the US Navy.

According to the company, Fire Scout is an autonomous helicopter system that conducts Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance, and Target-acquisition (ISR&T), laser designation, and battle management to tactical users without relying on manned aircraft or space-based assets. Fire Scout has the ability operate from air-capable ships and land bases in support persistent ISR&T requirements.

The MQ-8C Fire Scout is the Navy’s next generation autonomous helicopter. The MQ-8C Fire Scout’s airframe is based on the commercial Bell 407, a mature helicopter with more than 1,600 airframes produced and over 4.4 million flight hours. It has the ability to autonomously take-off and land on any aviation-capable ship and from prepared and unprepared landing zones. This increases range, endurance and payload capacity.

Work is expected to be completed in August 2021.

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