Northrop Grumman Corporation will produce an additional MQ-4C Triton multi-intelligence uncrewed aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) following the Australian government’s decision to provide funding. The contract award will bring the total fleet size in Australia to four aircraft. Additionally, Northrop Grumman Australia has been selected by the Australian government to maintain the Triton fleet from two locations: RAAF Edinburgh, South Australia, and RAAF Tindal, Northern Territory.
“The addition of a fourth aircraft will enhance the resilience of the fleet and will provide superior surveillance capability to monitor and protect Australia’s maritime interests 24/7,” said Christine Zeitz, chief executive and general manager, Australia & New Zealand, Northrop Grumman. “We are committed to keeping Australia safe and this sovereign surveillance capability will not only contribute to, but also significantly enhance a wide range of missions.”
Triton will help Australia meet its security challenges by providing maritime monitoring of the vital sea lanes in the Indo-Pacific. These systems will have a vital role to play not just as sensors, but also as communication platforms that can facilitate the transfer of data across warfighting domains and various mission needs.
The Australian Tritons already under contract are progressing as planned through their production schedules. The inaugural flight of Australia’s first MQ-4C will occur later this year at Northrop Grumman’s Palmdale Aircraft Integration Center in California. This will mark a major production milestone in the delivery of the first aircraft to Australia in 2024.
Northrop Grumman Australia will establish a dynamic support environment for progressive delivery of capability systems into Australia. This includes establishment of ground stations into RAAF Edinburgh and air vehicles into RAAF Tindal. Northrop Grumman Australia is building a highly qualified and capable Australian workforce across both locations to leverage the extensive knowledge and experience of Northrop Grumman in supporting U.S. Navy Triton operations.