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Australia receives Triton preparation system ahead of schedule

3rd September 2021 - 18:07 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The MQ-4C Triton will bring Australia an unprecedented amount of maritime domain awareness. (Photo: Northrop Grumman)

Australia has received the Triton NITE system to assist with the arrival of its first aircraft.

Northrop Grumman has delivered the Triton Network Integration Test Environment (NITE) to Australia ahead of schedule.

Based at RAAF Base Edinburgh, NITE will support efforts to configure and test the array of the MQ-4C Triton’s network interfaces and systems before its arrival.

The first aircraft is expected to arrive in 2023, however, the RAAF will not be ready to receive it at Base Edinburgh until 2024. Until that point, the platform will be based in Guam.

Northrop Grumman general manager, Christine Zeitz, explained: ‘This programme will derisk the first Triton aircraft arriving into Australia’.

NITE will facilitate this by enabling the designing and testing of Triton’s network architecture on defence wide area networks.

 Northrop Grumman began the build process of Australia’s first Triton aircraft in 2020, with two more ordered.

The programme successfully achieved its first flight in July earlier this year.  

According to Shephard Defence Insight, MQ-4CTriton is a maritime version of the Global Hawk HALE UAS. It can perform ISR collection and possesses the capability to disseminate that data to the fleet.

It has been specialised for maritime operations, operating at altitudes exceeding 50,000ft and can cover more than 1,000,000sq. mi.

The platform was developed by Northrop Grumman for the US Navy’s Broad Area Maritime Surveillance requirement.

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