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West Texas Spanloader

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posted on May, 1 2015 @ 05:33 PM
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It's not the elusive companion.




posted on May, 1 2015 @ 06:14 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Everyone knows the Companion is really the TR-3B.


Runs out of room before Zaph can smack me
edit on 1-5-2015 by BASSPLYR because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 06:19 PM
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a reply to: BASSPLYR

Don't forget that at some point you're going to have to be in arms reach.



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 06:21 PM
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I'm assuming an NG bird.

of the cranked kite variety



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 06:39 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Just don't sic your dog on me. I heard he doesn't like ATS members.




Also, don't forget I can summon D.U.D.E. to visit the Aviation forum and share the next chapter in the Armstrong/ AI saga.

Don't make me do it.




edit on 1-5-2015 by BASSPLYR because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 06:46 PM
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a reply to: BASSPLYR

On the contrary, he really likes ATS members. They apparently taste like chicken.



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 07:00 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Nah he'll spit me out, my lipid content makes me too chewy.


edit on 1-5-2015 by BASSPLYR because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 07:14 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
It's not the elusive companion.


Oh well. One day............



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 07:28 PM
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a reply to: Northernhollow

If you ever see it, it'll make your jaw drop.



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 07:35 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: Northernhollow

If you ever see it, it'll make your jaw drop.


C'mon now, how heavy do you want my sighs to be?



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 07:39 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

You think they'll ever declassify it one day or is it that radical of a design. Or they just want that niche it fills out to be deniable and so no generation of it will ever see the light of day.



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 07:46 PM
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a reply to: BASSPLYR

I doubt it, if they're still flying it. That means it does over things too.



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 08:11 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

"Still flying" sounds a little like a bit of plausible deniability, it says nothing about whether something EVER flew...

What about predecessors or follow-ons? Was there any chance that the YF-23 was to some still-classified platform what the F-4 Phantom was to the F3 Demon? Or might the -23 been the F3 Demon to some undisclosed "F-4 Phantom"?

As for the West Texas craft, I called it from day one as some sort of cranked-kite Northrop product or its derivative.

If it's not the LRS-B, and it's not the companion, then my next wild guess would be either another, undisclosed strike/P-AEA platform, or stealth STOL transport.

We only saw the Texas craft from below, but there are a couple features that could be in line with a small transport craft. One is the appearance of a protruding nose, something that's crucial for pilot visibility in the kinds of takeoff/landing conditions that any stealth transport would be used in. Another key bit to remember is that we're only seeing this thing from below. Those narrow wingtip extensions could be canted up for slow-speed yaw control and we would never know it. Even the narrow twin-engine contrail matches the Senior Citizen concepts with engines mounted nearly on the centerline to provide space outboard of them in the wings for the lift fans.

So imagine a stealth BWB/spanloader with a protruding nose for takeoff/landing visibility, thick wings to fit the lift fans, narrow engines to allow for those outboard fans, and twin up-canted wingtips/tails for slow-speed yaw control. It'd look an awful lot like that Texas craft, now wouldn't it?



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 08:13 PM
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a reply to: Barnalby

It first flew in the early 80s, and as of last year was s still in use. Which means that it's a lot more than just a designator craft.



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 08:24 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

There's only a handful of roles I could see the USAF not wanting to disclose, and those all would make this an EXTREMELY high-value target, or one that's still EXTREMELY useful, providing a capability that the USAF doesn't want to go flaunting.

If it's the first reason, could it be a BSAX follow-on? A Stealth AWACS?

If it's the second, could it be a Stealth Wild Weasel platform? Something with the ability to drop and pick up SOCOM/CIA teams?



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 08:54 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

You talking about the companion or Texas?



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 08:57 PM
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a reply to: BASSPLYR

Or the YF-23



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 08:58 PM
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a reply to: BASSPLYR

Companion.



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 11:20 PM
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Really intriguing, just been reading a few things on the F-117A and from links from Wiki and other articles from Aviation Week,




In the middle of that string of F-117s, we spotted a markedly different aircraft. It sported a planform with a less-pronounced wing sweep than the Nighthawk, a quieter engine acoustic signature and a significantly different exterior lighting pattern. Despite yeoman efforts, my AW&ST colleagues and I were never able to identify this aircraft or its mission. The mysterious bird may still be flying out there ... or retired and hangared at the secretive Groom Lake, Nev., air base.


Also someone saying on a message board that its never been reported by Boomers and others saying a potential photograph exists that might have been taken by a boomer.

And then I read this:




Key among these were the “Ravens” (electronic warfare officers) from the 55th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing that flew the RC-135 Rivet Joint electronic surveillance aircraft. Along with other intelligence assets, the RC-135s helped maintain an accurate and up-to-date electronic order of battle of the Iraqi forces in Kuwait and Iraq.





Along with other intelligence assets


I know this can mean satellite, SF but as the Articles on the F-117 in Iraq all seem to point to them and the F-111 working together, the F-117A using passive flir and only firing a confirmation laze, there doesnt seem to be any need for a 'companion'.

Unless it is to get eyes on upto date almost realtime data on Radars so the bomb trucks (F-117a) can fly a safe path.

F-117a energing from the shadows

Feed us dear leader....



posted on May, 1 2015 @ 11:26 PM
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a reply to: Forensick

All the Nighthawk targets over Baghdad were hit by single aircraft. The only time they worked in pairs was over Panama, when they were first used.

The only pictures I ever heard of are believed to have been destroyed.
edit on 5/1/2015 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)



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