Air Force May Hand Over Some Predator UAVs to Navy

The U.S. Navy may take on some of the U.S. Air Force's General Atomics-built MQ-1 Predator unmanned aerial vehicles as the latter prepares to transition to the MQ-9 Reaper drone by the end of 2018, The War Zone reported Monday.

“There are a number of possibilities as to where they could go, including Air Force museums,“ a spokesperson for the Air Force told the publication in an email.

“The Air Force is working with the Navy to determine configurations and quantity for possible transfer.“

The Air Force, which flies its Predator drones for use in both unarmed and armed reconnaissance operations, initially announced plans to retire its fleet of more than 100 MQ-1s in 2015.

The Navy announced earlier this month that it is considering the possibility of tapping General Atomics to maintain and operate its Reaper UAVs in Afghanistan.

The report noted that the service could work with the company to fly the MQ-1s that it could potentially receive from the Air Force.

The USAF spokesperson said in the email the service does not expect the MQ-1s to be made available through the Excess Defense Article Program, but will screen the drone's configuration and condition to identify potential candidates that can be offered via the program.

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