HANCOCK FIELD AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, SYRACUSE (08/18/2014)The New York Air National Guard's 174th Attack Wing conducts the unit's first operation of an MQ-9 remotely piloted aircraft on the ramp of Hancock Field International Airport.
Members of the area news media are welcome to view the operation and speak with wing commander Col. Greg Semmel about future MQ-9 flights in Central New York.
WHO: Colonel Greg A. Semmel, 174th Attack Wing Commander
WHAT: A press conference announcing the first taxiing of the MQ-9 on Hancock Field International Airport
WHEN: 1:00 p.m., Tuesday, August 19, 2014. Members of the Media MUST be at the Thompson Road gate of Hancock Field Air National Guard Base NO LATER THAN 12:45 p.m.
WHERE: Main Hangar, Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, 6001 Molloy Road, Syracuse, NY 13211.
Coverage Opportunities: Colonel Greg Semmel will provide a brief summary of current operations of the MQ-9 at Hancock Field. Immediately following, media will be able to photo/video the first taxiing of MQ-9 on Hancock Field. Following the taxiing event, there will be a brief question and answer period with Col. Semmel and maintenance personnel.
Members of the Media must contact Major Sandra Stoquert, the wing Public Affairs Officer NLT 11:30 a.m. at (315) 233-2651 or 2408 for access to this secure military facility. Entry will be through theThompson Road gate.
MQ-9 Operations at Hancock Field
Currently, all flight operations of the MQ-9 aircraft are conducted at Wheeler Sack Army Airfield at Fort Drum.
The taxi operation in Syracuse is one further step towards the launch and recovery of MQ-9 aircraft at Hancock Field. The FAA modified airspace around Hancock Field in 2013 to expand available training areas and provide transition from high altitude down to Hancock Field.
It is expected that the FAA will ultimately approve for the departure and return of MQ-9 aircraft from Hancock Field to fly to Fort Drum or transition to the area's restricted airspace for military training.
174th Attack Wing
The 174th Attack Wing was established in 1947 as the first Air National Guard flying unit in New York State.
It currently flies the MQ-9 Reaper Remotely Piloted Aircraft in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
The wing also trains all MQ-9 maintenance technicians for the Air Force, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve as well as training some personnel from allied nations. The wing also conducts qualification training for MQ-9 pilots and sensor operators at Hancock Field Air National Guard Base and Fort Drum, operating out of Wheeler-Sack Army Airfield.
At the same time the wing deploys members oversees to support MQ-9 operations and other Air Force commitments and operates MQ-9s in the Central Command area of operations from a facility at Hancock Field Air National Guard Base.
The wing also maintains the air-to-ground gunnery range at Fort Drum which is used by Air Force, Air Guard and Air Force Reserve units across the northeast and provides forces to respond to state emergencies at the direction of the governor.