EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., March 30, 2006 – An RQ-4A Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle known as N-1 took off from the main runway at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., March 27, on a one-way mission to Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md.
The N-1, one of two acquired by the U.S. Navy through the Global Hawk Maritime Demonstration Program, is the first of its kind delivered to the Navy, and is being prepared for participation in the Navy's Joint Expeditionary Force Experiment 2006.
"The successful delivery of N-1 to Patuxent River marks a major milestone in the joint development of the Global Hawk reconnaissance system," said U.S. Air Force Col. Christopher Cook, 412th Operations Group commander.
The delivery was enabled by the installation of a launch and recovery element at Naval Air Station Patuxent River that now allows the Navy to begin and end their missions at their own airfield.
Prior to this installation all Navy work had to originate from Edwards, said Cook.
"I know that the 452nd Flight Test Squadron and the 412 Test Wing look forward to our continuing partnership with our Navy teammates in providing the best capability possible to our combatant commanders," said Cook.
Prior to its flight to the east coast, the aircraft was deemed safe for flight in national airspace by a military airworthiness certificate accomplished by the Global Vigilance Combined Test Force here, a first for an unmanned system.