Rolls-Royce Corp. is being tapped for services in support of the AE 3007H engine. The firm-fixed price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract
is valued at $420 million and provides for provides for maintenance, repair and overhaul of the engine. The AE 3007H
(F137) engine is used to power Northrop Grumman’s RQ-4 Global Hawk UAS. In typical operations the Global Hawk
has a cruise speed of 357 mph, a range of 8,700 mi, a service ceiling of 60,000 feet and may fly for up to 28 hours. The turbofan engine produces a net thrust of 7,050 lb. Work will be performed in Montreal, Canada; and at Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, and is expected to be completed by June, 2024.
Northrop Grumman’s RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV has established a dominant position in the High Altitude/ Long Endurance UAV market. While they are not cheap, they are uniquely capable. During Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), the system flew only 5% of the US Air Force’s high altitude reconnaissance sorties, but accounted for more than 55% of the time-sensitive targeting imagery generated to support strike missions. The RQ-4 Global Hawk was also a leading contender in the Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS) UAV competition, and eventually won.
The Global Hawk Maritime Demonstration Program (GHM-D or BAMS-D) aims to use the proven RQ-4 Global Hawk airframe as a test bed for operational concepts and technologies that will eventually find their way into BAMS, and contribute valuable understanding to the new field of maritime surveillance with high-flying UAVs. It’s not just a test program, however, as its remaining drones also deploy to assist the fleet in active operations.