Northrop pitches UVision Hero loitering munition variant for US Army Future Vertical Lift
Northrop pitches UVision Hero loitering munition variant for US Army Future Vertical Lift – link
Source: Flight Global
- Northrop Grumman plans to pitch the US Army on an air-launched effect variant of the UVision Hero family of loitering munitions.
- The air-launched effect, called Hero ALE, is intended for use with the service’s Future Vertical Lift (FVL) aircraft, including its next-generation utility and scouting rotorcraft. The US Army is pushing development of air-launched effects as a sort of general-purpose drone that could carry reconnaissance, electronic warfare or loitering munition payloads.
- Though UVision is based in Israel, Northrop would manufacture the Hero ALE in the USA and might eventually integrate its own sensor systems, communications devices and warheads.
- The Hero ALE is based on the UVision Hero-400EC, an electric-powered loitering munition, though it also incorporates components from the smaller Hero-120.
- The weapon is designed to be compatible with the Boeing AH-64 Apache, the General Atomics Aeronautical Systems MQ-1C Gray Eagle, Future Long Range Assault Aircraft and Future Attack and Reconnaissance Aircraft.
- Northrop is scheduled to demonstrate the air-launched effect for the first time this September, says Bill Eledge, the company’s senior program manager of loitering munitions program.
- Northrop is also developing a radio frequency payload for the Hero ALE to meet two US Army requirements: a detect, identify, locate and report capability, and a decoy capability. The company says its payload ought to provide electronic support measures, electronic attack and anti-radiation homing abilities to the Hero ALE.
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