Global Hawk Block 20 and Block 30 remotely piloted aircraft will undergo initial operational test and evaluation starting in October at two Air Force sites in California, USAF officials have announced. The six-week evaluation will include 17 sorties flown from Beale Air Force Base and Edwards Air Force Base to gauge how well these configurations meet requirements for providing overhead imagery and electronic signals collection. “The evaluation will allow us to start employing Block 20 and 30 models worldwide,” said Maj. Rob Gudikunst, deputy director of the 9th Reconnaissance Wing commander’s action group at Beale. Members of the Air Force Operational Test and Evaluation Center will conduct the evaluation with one Block 20 and seven Block 30 airframes. The sorties will be missions ranging from six to 20 hours, including flights to capture images over Alaska, California, and Florida. (Beale report by SrA. Chuck Broadway)
A majority of panelists convened by the Atlantic Council to assess the situation in Ukraine believe that Russia will have enough forces—and recent practice in Belarus—to invade Ukraine within a month. A senior Air Force official concurred, saying the service expects the conflict soon.