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MQ-8B laser designates for Seahawk

30th September 2016 - 11:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team


The US Navy’s Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 23 has successfully used an MQ-8B Fire Scout unmanned autonomous helicopter as a laser designator platform for an MH-60S Seahawk helicopter to fire an AGM-114N Hellfire missile, the navy announced on 27 September.

The MH-60S flew from Naval Air Station (NAS) North Island, while the MQ-8B was operated from NAS Point Mugu. The missile firing took place on a designated live-fire range off the coast of NAS Point Mugu against a target moving at a speed of around 10-15 knots.

The MQ-8B detected the target location and transmitted it to the MH-60S for targeting. Once the target requirements were met, the MQ-8B lased the target and the MH-60S flew into position for the running missile shot.

The successful firing marks a major milestone in work to integrate the navy's manned and unmanned assets.

Lt Cdr Thanh Nguyen said: ‘We were able to validate the Fire Scout's ability to find and designate a target, which greatly expands the lethal range of the MH-60S while keeping air crews out of harm's way.’

The Shephard News Team


The Shephard News Team

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