AN DIEGO – 16 April 2020 – On March 20, 2020, U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) pilots and sensor operators from Marine Unmanned Aerial Car Squadron 1 (VMU-1) carried out their first operational flight of an MQ-9A Reaper Unmanned Plane System (UAS) within the Center East. The multi-sensor reconnaissance-equipped MQ-9A UAS produced by Normal Atomics Aeronautical Techniques, Inc. (GA-ASI) has offered essential assist to USMC’s ahead operations on the battlefield.
With the oversight of the GA-ASI crew, the VMU-1 “Watchdog” crews took management of a Firm Owned/Firm Operated (COCO) MQ-9A supporting ahead deployed Marines. This USMC achievement comes shortly after surpassing 7,000 hours of COCO flight operations since September 2018.
“This achievement represents a novel milestone and instance of the Marine Corps’ legacy of innovation,” mentioned David R. Alexander, president, GA-ASI. “As a associate with the Marine Corps, we look ahead to increasing the function of Medium-altitude, Lengthy-endurance (MALE) UAS in assist of maritime littoral missions.”
VMU-1 leases MQ-9A Reaper plane to meet its pressing wants request for persistent Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) in Afghanistan. GA-ASI has been working with VMU-1 because the USMC transitions its COCO MQ-9A contract to a Authorities Owned/Authorities Operated (GOGO) contract within the coming yr.
The GOGO functionality fulfills the Commandant’s directive for USMC Group 5 persistent ISR functionality with strike. VMU-1 would be the check mattress and incubator to offer essential data, classes realized, necessities, techniques, methods, and procedures that can support within the USMC efforts for the profitable acquisition and fielding of the Marine Air-Floor Process Pressure (MAGTF) Unmanned Plane System (UAS) Expeditionary (MUX) Group 5 functionality.