Tuesday, April 12, 2011
The Northrop Grumman-built MQ-8B Fire Scout unmanned helicopter marked a new single-day flight record of 18 hours. Navy operators achieved the record using a single aircraft in a series of endurance flights Feb. 25 from the USS Halyburton. Fire Scout is providing intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance data to support anti-piracy missions while deployed on the ship for the Navy's 5th Fleet. Last April, Fire Scout concluded a military utility assessment on board the USS McInerney, a frigate similar to the Halyburton. Fire Scout has flown twice as much in the first two months on the Halyburton than the entire McInerney deployment. The system also completed initial flight tests on board the littoral combat ship USS Freedom in November. (Source: Globe Newswire, 04/12/11) Gulf Coast note: Fire Scouts are built in part in Moss Point, Miss.