Air Force Lists Candidate Bases for General Atomics-Built MQ-9 Reaper Operations

2 mins read

UAs not dronesThe U.S. Air Force will select two locations from a pool of candidate air bases to house General Atomics-built MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft and related operations.

The service branch said Thursday the first location will host an MQ-9 operations group with mission control elements while the second location will have a full MQ-9 wing with a launch and recovery element, a mission control element, a maintenance group and operations support personnel.

“We are using the strategic basing process to determine the best locations for hosting additional locations for the MQ-9 mission,” said Jennifer Miller, Air Force deputy assistant secretary for installations.

“As we go through the basing process, we will use the information we collect to help us determine the affordability and potential locations for expanding the MQ-9 enterprise.”

The candidate bases for the first site are:

  • Davis-Monthan Air Force Base
  • Moody Air Force Base
  • Mountain Home Air Force Base
  • Offutt Air Force Base
  • Shaw Air Force Base

The choices for the second site are:

  • Eglin Air Force Base
  • Tyndall Air Force Base
  • Vandenberg Air Force Base
  • Shaw Air Force Base

Air Combat Command will conduct site surveys at all eight locations and site survey teams will assess the location’s capacity to meet requirements and the potential impact to existing missions as well as the base’s infrastructure and manpower.

The Air Force said its search for additional basing locations supports a push to provide leadership opportunities and increase the diversity of assignment opportunities for personnel in the MQ-9 program, as well as foster integration with other organizations.

General Atomics’ aeronautical systems business built the multi-mission MQ-9 to support the missions of military and government clients such as the Department of Homeland Security, NASA and the air forces of France, the U.K., Italy and Spain.

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