Global Hawk Spy Plane Offers Glimpse of Future Robotics at Xconomy 6X6 Event on December 1

11/15/11Follow @bbuderi

Think of it as a flying beluga whale. At least, that’s the way Xconomy’s San Diego editor Bruce Bigelow, once described the Global Hawk robot spy plane. And I have to say, I am personally very excited that this reconnaissance craft extraordinaire will be one of the featured presentations at our 6X6: Six Cities, Six Big Tech Ideas conference in downtown Boston on December 1.

Get your tickets here—the saver rate ends on Thursday.

Built by Northrop Grumman, the Global Hawk was conceived in San Diego as the modern, robotic manifestation of Lockheed’s famous U-2 spy plane. Under development for well over a decade, it has a bulbed-out nose, a ‘V’-shaped tail, and long, thin wings that span 130.9 feet to be exact. But the important part is that it is built to fly autonomously for 35-40 hours at 65,000 feet-packing more than a ton of surveillance equipment from infrared and electro-optical sensors to synthetic aperture radar.

We are pumped that Bill Walker, chief of Global Hawk business development, will be one of our speakers. Walker reports he is bringing some cool video of the Global Hawk in action to share with our audience. “Global Hawk is a peek into the future of autonomous aircraft that can provide rapid access to remote areas of the world,” he says. Among the potential missions, for war and peace:

—track ground forces over a large area, and identify/locate small targets

—monitor shipping and maritime domain access for protection and threat assessment

—observe/assess large disaster areas to support relief operations

—collect scientific information about weather and climate, including hurricanes

—provide a communications gateway in the sky to connect military troops on the ground and in the air, or to connect first responders in a disaster area

Walker’s presentation and videos should be fascinating, but they are just one part of 6X6, which features one potentially game-changing tech company from each of Xconomy’s six cities—not to mention a special opening keynote from Xconomist Stephen Wolfram, the visionary founder and CEO of Wolfram Research and creator of Mathematica and the Wolfram|Alpha search engine.

You can see the rest of the lineup and get tickets here. We are looking forward to seeing you on Dec. 1.

Bob is Xconomy's founder and editor in chief. You can e-mail him at bbuderi@xconomy.com, call him at 617.500.5926. Follow @bbuderi

By posting a comment, you agree to our terms and conditions.