Pentagon Investing $1B in Spy Blimps Two huge contracts are in the works 15 comments Comments A file photo of a Navy blimp. The Pentagon has much bigger ones in the works. (AP) (User Submitted) – Between Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin, the US military will pay out nearly a billion dollars to get spy blimps in the air over tactical areas. Northrop (with a $517 million contract) is due to produce three seven-story blimps, each the length of a football field and able to stay in the air for three weeks, reports Wired. Using the Army's drone-control system, they will be outfitted with 2,500 pounds of equipment designed to capture still and video images and transmit them and other intelligence information back to base. They are hybrids, flying on helium and propelled by diesel engines. Lockheed Martin, meanwhile, is producing a 15-story blimp for use by the Navy that will use laser radar to identify potential targets. It's got a $400 million contract. Click here for more details on both.