The RQ-4 Global Hawk strategic reconnaissance drone of the U.S. Air Force crashed while returning from a mission in North Dakota, USA.
The drone crashed in a rural field at about 7 a.m. on August 6 while it was returning to Grand Forks Air Force Base.
A fire that occurred after the accident was put out and there were no reported injuries on the ground.
A single unit of the RQ-4 comes with a price tag of $222 million, or approximately $144 million more than the F-35 jet.
The Air Force is currently investigating the incident. In a statement, Col. Jeremy Fields, the 319th Reconnaissance Wing vice commander, said military personnel were on the scene and he anticipated the recovery and investigation may take several weeks.
Friday’s crash is only the fifth non-combat loss in the aircraft’s 23-year flying history. The last incident involving the aircraft took place in June 2018 when an RQ-4 crashed into the sea off Naval Station Rota, Spain. Improper mission planning and a leak in a cracked oil line reportedly caused its engine to fail during a ferry flight to the Middle East.