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MQ-8 Fire Scout

LCS In Pacific: Run Silent, Run Shallow

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


Navy photo

What good is a little ship in a big war on a big ocean? It can hide behind islands and in shallow waters, sniping at the enemy fleet — much like the PT boats of World War II or skirmishers in a Napoleonic army. That’s the US Navy’s newest argument for its much-criticized Littoral Combat… Keep reading →

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What The HASC Seapower Mark Means For The Navy

Posted by Rep. J. Randy Forbes on


This marks the first of our monthly op-eds by Rep. J. Randy Forbes, chairman of the House Armed Services seapower and projection forces subcommittee. We will send a Tweet before posting each one so you’ve got some notice. Read on! The Editor At the start of my first column, I would like to thank the editors of Breaking… Keep reading →

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Teaching Drones How To See: Fire Scout & Kestrel

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


A second MQ-8C Fire Scout unmanned helicopter flew for the first time at Naval Base Ventura County, Pt. Mugu, Calif., on Feb. 12. Current flight tests are focused on validating the flight capabilities of the system before ship-based flights take place this summer. Northrop Grumman photo by Alan Radecki

The military is drowning in video. Figuring out what’s worth watching can literally be a matter of life and death. The standard technique today is to sit young servicemembers down at screens to stare at live feeds or archived video — from drones, from satellites, from static cameras — until their eyes glaze over. But that’s… Keep reading →

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Fire Scout Drone’s First At-Sea Takeoff

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


Courtesy Northrop Grumman

Fire Scout makes it look easy to take off from a destroyer. It’s not. In video released today (above), the MQ-8C helicopter takes off from the destroyer Jason Dunham with its eyes closed — or rather with its cockpit windows painted over, because there’s nobody inside. Though derived from the widespread Bell 407, the Northrop… Keep reading →

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Fire Scout Grows Up: Drone Getting Radar, Rockets, 2016 IOC

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


Navy graphic

NATIONAL PRESS CLUB: They get so big, so fast. Once a child-sized helicopter that could just collect reconnaissance imagery, the Navy’s MQ-8 Fire Scout has graduated to a bigger airframe that will also carry a maritime search radar and laser-guided rockets. The tentative plan is to kick off the competition for the new radar with… Keep reading →

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Can Fire Scout Drone Help Save LCS?

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


Navy graphic

At 11 years old, the robot helicopter called the MQ-8 Fire Scout is a at least a preadolescent. But ever since the reconnaissance drone’s first flight in 2002, it’s had one big problem: It’s a little bit…little. So, at the Navy’s request, manufacturer Northrop Grumman basically did a brain transplant. It put the Fire Scout’s… Keep reading →

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Navy Budget Share Grows, Boosted By Pacific Strategy Shift

Posted by Otto Kreisher on


PENTAGON: The Navy would get the largest budget share among the three military services in the 2014 budget submitted Wednesday, but would still see a drop in total funding from what Congress provided for this year in the final version of the continuing resolution. The $155.8 billion requested for the Navy Department in the president’s… Keep reading →

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