US Navy wants more MQ-4C Triton unmanned aircraft system

According to information published by U.S. Department of Defense, Northrop Grumman Systems is awarded a $98,900,000 modification to a previously awarded, fixed-priced incentive (firm-target) contract (N0001919C0008). This modification increases the scope and provides for one additional low rate initial production Lot Five MQ-4C Triton unmanned aircraft system.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 The prototype MQ-4C, BuNo 168457, on its first flight (Picture source: Official U.S. Navy photograph)

Work will be performed in San Diego, California (24.6%); Red Oak, Texas (15%); Baltimore, Maryland (10.9%); Palmdale, California (10.8%); Salt Lake City, Utah (6.8%); Bridgeport, West Virginia (5.8%); Indianapolis, Indiana (5.3%); Moss Point, Mississippi (4.2%); San Clemente, California (1.7%); New Town, North Dakota (1.2%); Waco, Texas (1.2%); various locations within the continental U.S. (11.9%); and various locations outside the continental United States. (0.6%), and is expected to be completed in January 2025.

Fiscal 2021 aircraft procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $80,800,895; fiscal 2020 aircraft procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $10,069,000; and fiscal 2019 aircraft procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $8,030,105 will be obligated at the time of award, of which $8,030,105 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year.

The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

The MQ-4C Triton is an American high-altitude long-endurance unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) for the United States Navy as a surveillance aircraft.

The MQ-4C Triton air vehicle is based upon the United States Air Force (USAF) RQ-4B Global Hawk, while its sensors are based upon components of already fielded in the U.S. DoD (Department of Defense) inventory. Along with the P-8A manned aircraft, the MQ-4C Triton is integral to the Navy's Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Force (MPRF) Family of Systems (FoS).

The fuselage of the MQ-4C Triton is an aluminum semi-monocoque construction while the V-tail, engine nacelle, and aft fuselage are made of composite materials. It has a length of 14.5 m, a height of 4.7 m, and a wingspan of 39.9 m. It has an internal payload of 1,452 kg maximum and an external payload of 1,089 kg.

The MQ-4C Triton can fly at a maximum altitude of 18,300m (60,000ft). It has a gross take-off weight of 14,628 kg. Its maximum unrefueled range is 18,427 km (9,950 nm) and has a flight endurance of 30 hours. It can reach a maximum speed of 575 km (357 mph).