posted on Aug, 12 2017 @ 07:27 PM
a reply to: Caver78
It's fine when it's retracted because it's shielded by the aircraft fuselage. But with stealth aircraft, the idea is to be as smooth as possible.
Things sticking out tend to become radar reflectors. That's why all the stealth aircraft have retractable lights and antenna.
In addition, the part of the boom that you see on the back of the tankers now, is just the outer shell. The portion that plugs into the receiver
retracts completely inside the part that you see. That's basically an aluminum tube that extends out. And it's about as stealthy as a B-52. It can't
be made out of most composites because fuel is corrosive as hell to composite materials, or it was until recently.
There are several platforms that would be extremely useful if they could be turned into a stealth platform. Being able to go even somewhat into
hostile territory with a support platform would radically reduce turn around time for aircraft. Right now, CAP aircraft have to fly to their patrol
area, after refueling well outside hostile territory, then limit their time on station because they have to go all the way back to the tanker. And
they're usually outside AWACS and other ISR capability.
edit on 8/12/2017 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)