US Navy forms first unmanned helo squadron
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 35 became the first composite expeditionary helicopter squadron to include both the world’s most technologically advanced helicopter; the MH-60R Seahawk and the MQ-8B Fire Scout vertical take-off and landing tactical unmanned aerial vehicle (VTUAV); during an establishment ceremony recently on Naval Air Station, North Island.
As the Navy’s first operational squadron with both manned and unmanned aircraft, HSM 35 heralds a new era for Naval Aviation. The squadron, designated the “Magicians,” adopted the call sign of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 35, which was decommissioned on NAS North Island in 1992, after 19 years of service.
“The reestablishment of this squadron is exceptional as it points towards the future for our Naval Aviation forces,” said Commander, Naval Air Forces, Vice Admiral David H. Buss. “The actions today represent a clear line dividing what Naval Aviation once was and what it will be.”