DAYTON, Ohio --
U.S. Air Force and industry officials joined personnel from the National Museum of the United States Air Force for the opening of the museum's new Northrop Grumman RQ-4A Global Hawk exhibit on Aug. 12.
Global Hawk is a high-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that sends near-real-time reconnaissance imagery to air, ground and sea forces. The RQ-4A, first flown in 1998, has seen service in Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) and in several American and international joint forces exercises. Global Hawk's development highlights the effort to use new tools and technologies to give military commanders highly detailed targeting and intelligence information.
The Global Hawk on display flew more than 4,800 hours and provided hundreds of thousands of images in support of U.S. forces around the world. It returned to the United States in February 2006 and came to the National Museum of the United States Air Force in 2008.
"The Global Hawk UAV-3 provided unprecedented intelligence information to battlefield commanders almost continuously since being pressed into service in 2001, deploying three times in support of the global war on terrorism," said George Guerra, Northrop Grumman vice president for High-Altitude Long-Endurance Systems, who was one of the program's pioneers, helping to build several of the Global Hawk air vehicles, including UAV-3. "The men and women who built and operated this aircraft take great pride in its historic performance, logging more than 4,800 flight hours, 167 missions and hundreds of thousands of images."
The Global Hawk now on display replaces an earlier model of the aircraft that was suspended from the ceiling in the museum's Modern Flight Gallery. The new exhibit is displayed in the same location.
"As an unmanned aerial vehicle, the Global Hawk points to the future of our Air Force," said Museum Director Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Charles D. Metcalf. "This exhibit gives our visitors the opportunity to get an up-close look at an aircraft that is serving in current operations and allows us to tell the stories of the men and women who are serving our country right now."
The National Museum of the United States Air Force is located on Springfield Street, six miles northeast of downtown Dayton. It is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day). Admission and parking are free.
NOTE TO PUBLIC: For more information, contact the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at (937) 255-3286.
NOTE TO MEDIA: For more information, contact Sarah Swan in the National Museum of the United States Air Force Public Affairs Division at (937) 255-1283. Photos are available at http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=347. B-roll is available upon request.
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