On 17th January a ceremony was held at NATO’s Sigonela base in Sicily to mark the arrival of the first two drones of the “NATO RQ-4D” series that will be used for reconnaissance flights in the territories controlled by the Western Military Alliance. As the Atlantic Council previously announced, NATO will initially have exclusively its five drones, which will begin to be used in the first half of 2020. Speaking about the importance of drones, the NATO`s Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, stressed that commanders would be able to detect potential threats and have an insight into the situation on the ground in all weather conditions. To illustrate the capabilities of drones, Stoltenberg said that only one of them is enough to control a territory size of Poland. NATO’s first man has revealed that 600 people from all Western Alliance nations will be in charge of drone management. He added that drones are the latest military formation within NATO and that all members of the organization will have information provided by them. Usage of this latest technology can be best seen from the fact that during one flight, a drone will be able to stay in the air for 30 hours and, among other things, will be able to cover the entire Atlantic Ocean and the Middle East.
What is more, NATO drones will be manufactured by the US military equipment factory “Nortrop Gramen” and they will fly from that factory (located in the United States) to Europe. The first drone successfully arrived at the end of November last year from the Palmdale base in the United States and flight for 22 hours to Italy without any problems.