Speed & Endurance



Quiet Mode:


Max Fuel (178g. 704L.):

NightHawk QS3

Long Endurance ISR Platform with Low Acoustic and Low Thermal Signatures

The NightHawk is a long endurance ISR platform with low acoustic and low thermal signatures, that is capable of manned and unmanned operations. Its advanced aerodynamic design, high efficiency turbo-diesel engine and carbon fiber construction enable a range of up to 5000 NM at cruise or approximately 60 hours of endurance while loitering, with a payload of 500 pounds operating as a UAV. The NightHawk also provides over 150ft3 of internal space for payload. Designed to be rapidly deployable via a C-17, its outer wing panels can be removed in less than 30 minutes by two individuals. There are two (2) hardpoints, designed to carry 450-pound loads on the wings which can be used to carry external sensors and/or auxiliary fuel. The NightHawk current TRL is 6.

Base Specifications

Wingspan30′ (9.1m); Wingspan – 57’ (17.4 m);  17’ (5.2 m) without outer wing panels
Weight11’ (3.4m); Weight (max) – 4000 pounds (1814 kg)
HeightSAFRAN SR305-260E, 260 HP
LengthPBS TJ-100 turbojet (300 pounds thrust) stored in fuselage tail cone
Engine (primary)JP-8, Jet A, A1; 118 gallons internal (446L), 60 gallons external (227L)
Engine (backup)80 knots / 36 hours / 2,880 NM
Fuels150 knots / 12 hours / 1,880 NM
Fuel TanksNine locations throughout aircraft for concealed or enclosed equipment
Aux fuel tanksUp to three: pilot + 2 (copilot, other) seated in tandem
SpeedISR platform – pilot, copilot/sensor operator and second sensor operator – space for two Wescam MX-15 gimbals (IR/Vis/etc.).  Utility platform – 1 crew and space for 3 or 4 pax / 1000 pounds (454 kg) of cargo, ~110 ft3
RangeLong-line INsertion and EXtraction (LINEX) winch system for lowering and raising personnel and cargo in circling flight, up to 450lbs. / operation
Endurance30 hours loiter time (45+ hours w/ external auxiliary tanks)
Ceiling> 25,000′
Sensor Payload18 ft3 in primary sensor bay, plus nine locations throughout aircraft for concealed or enclosed equipment
Cabin ConfigurationManned ISR configuration – three stations: pilot, copilot/sensor operator and additional sensor operator/crew. Utility configuration – 1 crew & space for 4 pax or 1000 pounds of cargo (~110 ft3)

UAV Configuration

MTOW4250 pounds
Internal aux fuel capacity90 gallons
Range5000+ NM @ 130 knots
Endurance~ 60 hours loiter time
Payload500 pounds with full load of fuel and 150 ft3 of concealed/internal space

Manned ISR Configuration

CrewUp to three – pilot, copilot (and/or sensor operator) and sensor operator
Sensor bayDesigned to carry two WESCAM MX-15 gimbals (IR/Vis/etc.) or equivalent equipment
Additional sensor locationsNine locations throughout aircraft for concealed or enclosed equipment

*Note – Specifications will vary by configuration, intended use, sensor options and mission parameters. More information on specifications can be found here