UAV round-upNorthrop and EADS received $559 German UAV contract

Published 5 February 2007

EuroHawk GmbH strikes a major deal in the European UAV market after years of effort; German Ministry of Defence impressed with EADS signals intelligence capability; delivery scheduled for 2010

It was just last May that European defense contractor EADS and Northrop Grumman (collectively known in this context as EuroHawk GmbH) applauded a memoranda of understanding establishing the base conditions for U.S.-German government cooperation concerning interoperability of the Global Hawk and Euro Hawk systems. That was a critical step towards an announcement made late last week that the German Ministry of Defence has awarded a $559 million contract to EuroHawk GmbH for the development of the Euro Hawk unmanned surveillance and reconnaissance system.

Like the singer R. Kelly and his onetime tourmate Jay-Z, the Euro Hawk can be described as the best of both worlds, marrying as it does Nothrop’s well-respected Global Hawk UAV with EADS signals intelligence capability. With a larger wing span than an Airbus A320 and a target total airborne endurance of thirty hours, the Euro Hawk is said to be the platform that best meets the Luftwaffe’s requirement for a high altitude, long endurance (HALE), signal intelligence system. “Euro Hawk is convincing proof of how the Bundeswehr is transforming and acquiring network enhanced capabilities,” said EADS’s Stefan Zoller. “With this project being realized, UAV technology takes a remarkable step forward in Europe.”

The demonstrator system delivery is scheduled for 2010, with contract approval for series production and initial operational capability expected in 2009. This schedule would ensure a 2010 replacement timeframe for the ageing fleet of SIGINT equipped Breguet Atlantiques still in service.

-read more in this company news release