Electronic Weapons: March 26, 2003


An effort is being made to sell the robotic RQ-4A Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle to European nations as a replacement for their Atlantic 1150 Electronic Reconnaissance (ELINT) aircraft, the manufacturer has installed electronic eavesdropping equipment in one of the RQ-4As. An RQ-4A so equipped is being flown to Germany for demonstration flights. The Global Hawk can stay in the air for up to 36 hours at a time and would be cheaper to operate than a manned recon aircraft. Germany's Atlantic 1150 aircraft will be retired by 2008, or sooner, because they are too old and expensive to maintain. The EuroHawk will use electronics supplied by European manufacturers. Global Hawk served in Afghanistan, spending over a thousand hours in the air. At least one RQ-4A was ordered to Kuwait this month.


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