This UAV will Replace EP-3E Aircraft in Intelligence Missions

This UAV will Replace EP-3E Aircraft in Intelligence Missions

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An MQ-4C Triton unmanned aerial vehicle equipped with an upgraded multi-intelligence configuration was successfully tested. Triton is the U.S. Navy’s premier high-altitude, long-endurance (HALE), maritime intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) platform.

The unmanned aerial vehicle flew for the first time in the integrated functional capability 4 (IFC-4) configuration. 

“The multi-intelligence configuration of Triton will completely revolutionize how the U.S. Navy and Royal Australian Air Force conduct maritime patrol and reconnaissance missions,” said Doug Shaffer, vice president and program manager, Triton programs, Northrop Grumman. “Multi-intelligence capabilities, coupled with Triton’s long-range sensors and 24-hour endurance, will enable an unprecedented amount of maritime situational awareness to inform real-time decision making at tactical to strategic levels.”

The company is working closely with the Navy to progress Triton toward initial operating capability (IOC) and worldwide deployments. 

The multi-intelligence configuration will also enable the Navy to retire the EP-3E Aries as Triton will be able to assume the intelligence collection missions currently conducted by the Aries, according to the company’s announcement.

The US Navy is currently operating two Tritons in the Pacific region in the baseline configuration as part of an early operational capability deployment. The Triton program expects to achieve IOC in 2023, and the Navy will eventually maintain five 24/7 operational orbits with a planned 68-aircraft program of record.