The US Air Force has awarded Northrop Grumman a contract to provide dynamic inflight rerouting for the RQ-4B Global Hawk remotely piloted aerial system (RPAS).
The software update, known as Dynamic Mission Operations (DYNAMO), will enhance Global Hawk’s ability to provide critical intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance data to geographic combatant commanders.
“DYNAMO is part of a series of Global Hawk modernization efforts, including the ground station modernization program, that will reinforce the weapon system’s ability to monitor and deter near-peer and peer threats around the globe,” said Jane Bishop, vice president and general manager, autonomous systems, Northrop Grumman. “These upgrades will make Global Hawk even more valuable in a future joint-all domain command and control (JADC2) environment.”
The DYNAMO flexible mission planning capability enables in-flight rerouting of Global Hawk, allowing operators to respond to changing real world conditions, whether natural or manmade, during a mission. The upgrade is on track to be fielded in 2023.
The RQ-4 Global Hawk is a high-altitude, long-endurance, remotely piloted aircraft fielded in four different blocks, with block 40 being the most recent variant. Block 40 carries the Radar Technology Insertion Program (RTIP) active electronically scanned array radar which provides moving target indicator (MTI) and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data.
Global is or will be in service with Japan and South Korea, while NATO is flying a modified version, the RQ-4D Alliance Ground Surveillance (AGS) system.