a reply to: Jukiodone
I agree that the military does tend to do things a certain way, but there is also a strong will to "boldly go where no military has ever gone before"
if you look at research and development.
As for the viability of LTA platforms, the advent of very strong and super light materials have drastically changed the major obstacle that has stood
in the way of LTA using vaacum, for instance.
Although I have to agree that HTA airframes do marvellous things, they always have to spend a lot of their power an energy, and fuel, on staying
aloft. With a true LTA platform, all this energy expenditure could be directed at forward thrust and maneuvrability. A silent, fast and very
maneuvrable platform that has all the advantages of a helicopter but none of the drawbacks. Effortless vertical hover, just thrust for station
keeping? It can even go backwards or sideways. Sounds like a good idea to me.
I think the possible advantages just in range, endurance and payload capability must make any such platform at least theoretically very interesting at
least at an advanced research and development level. And if you could use all your power for speed and maneuvrability, effortlessly hover, VTOL almost
anywhere? Couple that with what it might do for cheaper and stealthy access to orbit and space, and maybe it doesn't seem so far fetched at all that
this would at least be pursued.
I think we might get to see this very soon in civil aviation too, when the technology is mature enough and production cost are low enough. Who would
want to weigh down an aircraft with aluminium and other HTA components if there was an alternative with inisignificant or even just lower weight
penalties? Say the world "fuel savings" and I guess a lot of aircraft operators would drool ever so slightly. Now if you could truly build a fast,
versatile, safe LTA airframe, it would revolutionise the whole aviation field.
And what would happen to space exploration if you had a reusable launch vehicle that could do the whole ground to orbit and beyond in one fell
I think if they have built this, it is going to trickle down into the civilian sector, or at least the technologies will. Or the civilian sector will
do it on their own, and some military forces will at least be ready for the space boom that surely will come in short order. It will be like the Wild
West, or the God Rush, and perhaps already being there when the boom happens isn't such a bad strategic idea. But the politics of it is, of course, a
Perhaps even such a quagmire that it is better to keep things secret for now and wait for the rest of the world to catch up. And when the world starts
to panic because all sorts of entities and organisations and individuals are rushing for the profits of space, you can say to the UN: "Well, it
happens that we have been developing some capacities...."
Hehe... The possibilities really are endless... ;-)
edit on 16-3-2016 by beetee because: Clarification and typos
edit on 16-3-2016 by beetee because: (no reason given)