UAS Aids Typhoon Relief Efforts in Philippines


Security company Northrop Grumman Corp.'s Global Hawk Block 30 unmanned aerial system (UAS) was used to support massive international humanitarian assistance and relief efforts following Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.

Northrop says that on Nov. 14, 2013, Global Hawk flew its first of three critical missions from Guam to the Philippines. The company reports that the UAS collected 282 wide-area images of the typhoon-ravaged area before returning to Andersen Air Force Base.

According to Northrop, the imagery was quickly relayed to U.S. and Philippine authorities to assist with infrastructure and damage assessments. The imagery also aided in logistical assessments of roads, airports and fields to help relief teams swiftly reach displaced survivors. On Nov. 16 and Nov. 20, the U.S. Air Force added the second and third missions to support relief efforts, Northrop notes.

In total, the company says Global Hawk collected approximately 1,000 planned images and a number of ad hoc collections on each mission.

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