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West Texas Spanloader

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posted on May, 27 2015 @ 02:42 PM
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a reply to: TheGoondockSaint

I would imagine that is a bit conservative, yes. However the fight for where to build this thing is still brewing today. Even if the aircraft is ready to be built it might not have a home state in which to be constructed until certain congressmen can come to an agreement.

Maybe there's been movement on that end, I've been out of it for a bit.




posted on May, 28 2015 @ 09:46 AM
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originally posted by: aholic
a reply to: TheGoondockSaint

I would imagine that is a bit conservative, yes. However the fight for where to build this thing is still brewing today. Even if the aircraft is ready to be built it might not have a home state in which to be constructed until certain congressmen can come to an agreement.


Well they can stop fighting over where to build it, I'll give them 40 acres as long a I can be there!



posted on May, 28 2015 @ 09:49 AM
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a reply to: TheGoondockSaint

It's going to be either California or Florida. Boeing has Long Beach opening up with the last C-17 being completed this year. Northrop just expanded their Florida facility pretty significantly.



posted on May, 28 2015 @ 10:01 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Sound like both companies have won in some way. Any chance northrup will go public with some birds they may currently be needing the expanded facilities for in florida? Or is the facility all about drones?
edit on 28-5-2015 by BASSPLYR because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 28 2015 @ 10:05 AM
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a reply to: BASSPLYR

Northrop just got a huge contract to upgrade and maintain the Global Hawk fleet. They need facilities for that, plus engineering facilities for their sixth generation development.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 01:32 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Just wondering. What's the chance of the AF going the LCS route and naming both winners and procuring a reduced amount of both airframes?



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 08:09 AM
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a reply to: aholic

I have an addition to that question... What are the odds of that happening publicly? Or budgeting the second one totally in the dark?

I could see, with all the budget cuts and cost saving measures, openly allocating gross amounts of funds for two bombers not going over well. Plus, then you lose the whole "buy in bulk and save" aspect.



posted on Jun, 2 2015 @ 01:49 AM
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I'd imagine the losing defense contractor(s) for the program will have a sizable portion of work from the winner - as did the ATB, ATF and JSF. Also, I don't see what the benefit would be of disclosing the runner-up plans. Why not cash in on the classified work, and keep that portion undisclosed for another run at it:



"Letting the cat out of the bag is a whole lot easier than putting it back in." - Will Rogers


I have another question to add: Is there a link between the LRS-B program and the MINOTAUR? It does seem to fit the manned/unmanned concept as well as appears to be a portion of a Family of Systems (FoS).

The MINION and the MINOTAUR
edit on 2-6-2015 by TAGBOARD because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 2 2015 @ 04:50 AM
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a reply to: TAGBOARD

Weren't minions supposed to be UCAV's that were deployed from F22's? Which sounds like a very good idea.



posted on Jun, 4 2015 @ 02:15 AM
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a reply to: Jukiodone

MINIONS were, according to Av Week. I don't believe MINOTAUR necessarily was - and that's my point. An "unmanned" element would seem to fit the eventual long-term conventional LRS-B mission.



posted on Jun, 18 2015 @ 01:44 PM
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a reply to: TAGBOARD

I have a question that maybe should have been asked a year ago: why is the aircraft that is the subject of this discussion referred to as a "spanloader"? I'm asking this as a professional aerospace engineer. The only thing we really know about it is that it seems to be a delta all-wing planform with a slightly concave trailing edge and a wing sweep angle that appears to be slightly more than 45 degrees. This would imply that it is intended for transonic cruise (around Mach = 0.9).

The term span "loading" refers to a load that is distributed in some manner along the span direction of the wing. I've seen this used to describe two different ideas.

One idea is the aerodynamic loading; this is the lift (and drag) force exerted by the air flowing over the wing. It has long been known that the most aerodynamically efficient aerodynamic span loading is elliptical. For a straight wing, the easiest way to achieve this is to keep the airfoil section and angle of attack constant and make the wing planform elliptical. The classic example of this is the WWI Spitfire.

In today's world of computational fluid dynamics and manufacturing with composite materials, it is possible to design an airplane where the chord size, the airfoil section, and the chord angle of attack are all varying in a complex manner as you move along the wing span in such a way as to get an elliptical lift distribution even though the outline of the wing doesn't look anything like an ellipse. Bob Liebeck's Boeing X-48 is a good example:

Boeing X-48 Blended Wing Body

I assume that whoever built this West Texas bird would do as much of this span distribution of lift as they could to try to approach an elliptical distribution. In fact, the concave trailing edge could be considered an attempt to control span-wise lift distribution.

The other way the term "span loading" was used when I was in Grad School was to refer to the span-wise distribution of weight along the wing. From a structural viewpoint, an airplane has traditionally been seen as a fuselage (where most of the weight is concentrated) with a wing (where most of the lift is concentrated) cantilevered out to one side. In this model, the lift on the wing is trying to bend the wing and break it off at the root. So the wing spar (usually triply redundant) has to be built strong enough so that it won't reach the yield stress of the material it's made of, even under the worst case lift load + margin (a minimum safety factor of about 2.5). Since the wing spar is usually the single heaviest piece of the airplane other than the fueselage, it pays to try to save weight in the wing. One way to do that is to move as much of the wing weight as far out in the direction of the wing tip as possible. That could include fuel, engines, and cargo, when appropriate. That gets to be real problematic for swept, tapered wing designs since there's not much real estate out there where you can put heavy stuff, but can find application in specialized cases. For example, the solar powered aircraft NASA Pathfinder could be considered a span-loader, because both the solar arrays and the drive motors are distributed relatively uniformly along the span:

NASA Pathfinder

I'm not ranting here (at least I hope I'm not) and I'm not even suggesting that we change the terminology for this sighting. I'm just noting that we seem to be using the term "spanloader" in a non-standard way--unless there's something I'm missing, here.



posted on Jun, 20 2015 @ 05:46 AM
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a reply to: 1947boomer

Thank you for the information, very good points you make. I agree with you on what defines a spanloader - they all use the "inertia relief" of mass distributed spanwise to reduce wing root bending moment.

I'd say that the Amarillo sighting did not appear to have any horizontal stabilizers (i.e. tailplane nor canards) and as such would not be able to trim itself above a total aircraft lift coefficient of ~ CL = 0.6. In these cases, the aerodynamic center of the wing is at the same location as the neutral point - unlike a conventional aircraft.

Amarillo is likely a blended wing body (BWB), and not a pure flying wing. The Trefftz plane plot of the BWB local CL at any trim condition would be close to purely elliptical across all mach, Reynolds number and linear portion of AoA.

As a BWB that uses the center portion to contribute lift, as you stated, it has a tailored lift distribution through aerodynamic and geometric airfoil twist across the span. The fact the body produces lift combined with pushing fuel, payloads, weapons and propulsion out toward the wings makes it a spanloader. The B-2 does this, which may be the predecessor program to the Amarillo sighting - thus it would adopt the name as well - in my opinion. It may be a weak example, but still meets the requirements for the term. Perhaps better called a partial spanloader.

Spanloader with Horizontal Stab: Boeing Spanloader

Spanloader without Horizontal Stab: Span loaded flying wing control

Non-Spanloader without Horizontal Stab: Boeing X-20 Dyna-Soar

In the case of the Dyna-Soar, I suppose the designers could afford a non-elliptical lift distribution to still meet mission performance requirements of cross range on reentry. As such, the non-elliptic lift distribution would disqualify it from being a spanloader.
edit on 20-6-2015 by TAGBOARD because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 27 2015 @ 12:48 PM
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Not directly related but as it's "allegedly" Boeing....
What do we make of this contraption???



Some tool on reddit is saying it is the "Boeing Quiet Bird" which was a stealth predecessor.

Never seen it before..my daughter says its a toy plane but it looks fairly legit to me design-wise in an F35 meets Tacit Blue meets YF-23 stylee

If that is a date in the photo things are progressing very slowly in the white world.
edit on 27-6-2015 by Jukiodone because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 27 2015 @ 01:47 PM
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a reply to: Jukiodone

Interesting photo. It does look like the quiet bird. But I thought the quiet bird had a single intake on top behind the cockpit like the bird of prey?

Boeing is interesting, but what ever happened to Lockheeds bright star program they were developing in the 90s? Not much info out there on it, but the idea seemed useful. Wonder if they ever got anywhere with it.
edit on 27-6-2015 by BASSPLYR because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 29 2015 @ 03:46 AM
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a reply to: BASSPLYR

Never seen the pic before so not heard of "Quiet Bird" either.

Someone ought to do a website with a list of suspected projects and all the pictures/drawings in chronological order as it might help SAP enthusiasts visualise the development process in terms of where we are today.

Not heard much about Bright Star but if the quiet bird is a 1950/60's design the sky is the limit in terms of what might be out there from the 90's.

Looking at the pics on google it looks a bit like the "Swiss Mountain fast mover" but there's also a passing resemblance to the alleged "F-121 Sentinel (centennial?),

The F-121 was alongside a F22/23 in a promotional piece:



And up close...



Did you come to any conclusions about the black triangle you saw?-must have been about a year ago now.



posted on Jun, 29 2015 @ 06:15 AM
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Stuff I have never heard of..



posted on Jun, 29 2015 @ 06:16 AM
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a reply to: Blackfinger

Oh but the F-121 is another Fun project. Heh.



posted on Jun, 29 2015 @ 08:50 AM
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a reply to: Jukiodone
Where this picture come from and for the date ??
It look like the Wichita plane no ?

edit on 29-6-2015 by darksidius because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 29 2015 @ 08:55 AM
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Oh great another Rabbit hole..



posted on Jun, 29 2015 @ 09:01 AM
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a reply to: Blackfinger


You'll get about two inches into this one and hit your head on the end of it.



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