Edwards Air Force Base officials announced the 452nd Flight Test Squadron is currently challenging/changing the way flight testing is conducted due to changes in technology. Control rooms used for flight testing manned aircraft needed to be updated/relocated to handle new remote piloted drones such as Northrop Grumman’s Global Hawk.
Pictured above, a European Global Hawk soars above Edwards Air Force Base.
A new Global Hawk mission control station (MCS) cockpit upgrade was recently completed at Edwards Air Force Base but this new cockpit area is too far away from the current control rooms so drone pilots and the test director couldn’t communicate face-to-face during testing. The squadron created a new Global Hawk control room co-located with the new MCS and testing is possibly underway.
Edwards 412th Test Wing will monitor the results of these new changes, compare the results to the previous setup, and decide if these new change were a “success”.
(U.S. Air Force photo by Bobbi Zapka)