Five More MQ-8C Fire Scouts Ordered for US Navy

A US Navy MQ-8C Fire Scout chained to the flight deck of the littoral combat ship USS Coronado (LCS 4) in the Pacific Ocean on June 21, 2018. Five more MQ-8Cs were ordered today for the USN. US Navy/Ensign Jalen Robinson

A FURTHER five MQ-8C Fire Scout unmanned air systems have been ordered for the US Navy.  A $55,062,919 contract was awarded to Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation for them today, January 30, by US Naval Air Systems Command.  The deal, which is a modification to a previously awarded fixed-price-incentive-firm contract, also includes two lightweight fuel cells.

Work is expected to be completed in August 2021.  Financing for the procurement comes from fiscal year 2018 US Navy aircraft funding.  The MQ-8C is based on the airframe of the Bell 407 helicopter, incorporating the avionics and other systems from the earlier MQ-8B, which was derived from the smaller Schweizer 333.