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Avenger is dead; long live Avenger

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posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 03:58 PM
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The General Atomics "Predator C" UAV was prototyped for the Air Force, who officially is the only customer that showed interest in the aircraft. It was also the basis for the Sea Avenger for the Navy UCLASS/CBARS program.

The airframe would make a poor choice for a tanker for the upcoming CBARS, and the Air Force has publicly stated that they have no designation or plans to order any airframes. "In accordance with the 2011 defense appropriation act, the air force procured prototype demonstration capabilities of the Avenger system," the air force says. “The demonstration has completed and there are no current plans for future demonstrations."

If that's the case, and the AF has no plans for "current or future demonstrations" or to procure any aircraft, why was the Avenger flying with the new MS-177 sensor mounted early this year? The MS-177 will be mounted on the RQ-4, but to date the only other aircraft to fly with it on board was an E-8C JSTARS.

So what's REALLY going on with Avenger?

www.flightglobal.com...
edit on 4/18/2016 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 04:09 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Some really sneaky stuff they don't want us to know?



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 04:16 PM
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a reply to: SonofaSkunk

The Avenger has gone back and forth between black and white world's before, so it's definitely not out of the realm of possibility however I would bet that it's redundant with what they have now.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 04:25 PM
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a reply to: Bfirez

You would think, but why spend the money both keeping it in flyable storage, and to modify it for a sensor you have no plans on ever using? That's not a minor upgrade.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 05:05 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Maybe they are using it, just letting everyone believe its been 'shelved'.

MS - 177



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 06:17 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58


So what's REALLY going on with Avenger?

www.flightglobal.com...


A Customer other than USAF who flies signals and multispectral imaging intelligence missions?

E.g. CIA, NSA, NRO, DIA, NGIA, ???, overseas ???
edit on 18-4-2016 by mbkennel because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 08:25 PM
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a reply to: mbkennel

Taken black while the Navy or the USAF develops a variant with a more deeply integrated HELLADS setup to serve as a flying stealth DEW (not so)CIWS that can orbit bases and/or carrier groups?



posted on Apr, 19 2016 @ 10:33 AM
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a reply to: Barnalby

BMDO.

They have recently said they want a laser armed boost phase anti missile system by 2021. A manned aircraft is highly unlikely for political reasons: anywhere ballistic missiles are likely to be hiding is not going to be friendly airspace and so an UAV is almost required for political reasons alone. Add in the loiter requirement and BOOM.

So, with that in mind, the Avenger sensor and HEL make sense.



posted on Apr, 19 2016 @ 05:57 PM
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Company funded proof of concept for the UK's Protector program? We already fly the Reaper and are looking to replace it as well as increase the size of the fleet. It was announced initially that it'd be the Predator B but with the longer wings and extra tanks of the ER version possibly along with the ability to fire the Brimstone.

It'd need to be re certified for European airspace but that's something they're already having to do for the Predator. If the deal's a good one then there's always the possibility of the Avenger appearing in UK colours.



posted on Apr, 19 2016 @ 05:58 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Could you talk to me like i was a idiot who knew nothing about this?



posted on Apr, 20 2016 @ 07:48 PM
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a reply to: Azeban

Around 2009 the Air Force requested two Avenger UAVs from General Atomics, as demonstrators. They were slightly different from each other, and were only for the Air Force to test and look at. They supposedly took them to Afghanistan, but they were never officially in the inventory as active aircraft.

After a couple of years, the Air Force program ended and they said they weren't buying any of them.

At the same time, to expand the capabilities of the RQ-4 Global Hawk, the Air Force developed a payload adapter, and the MS-177 sensor. The Global Hawk is the only aircraft that will use it.

They tested the sensor on the E-8 JSTARS, and by this summer on the RQ-4. But for some reason, despite the Air Force having no plans to buy the Avenger, they modified one of the two to carry the sensor and flew it early this year.



posted on Apr, 20 2016 @ 07:54 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Zaphod i love you, the man with the golden wings! You are like a genie in a bottle



posted on Apr, 20 2016 @ 07:55 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Which one are they buying, the E-8 or the RQ-4?



posted on Apr, 20 2016 @ 08:04 PM
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a reply to: Azeban

They already have both. The E-8 went operational just before Desert Storm. The Global Hawk is going to take over for the U-2 when it retires in a couple years. But it currently can't change sensors, and doesn't have sensors equal to the U-2, which is why they developed the MS-177.



posted on Apr, 20 2016 @ 08:09 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Please continue, you can fill in more if you like..



posted on Apr, 20 2016 @ 08:12 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Since you were so nice; Fama candida rosa dulcior

A gift from me to you



posted on Apr, 20 2016 @ 08:17 PM
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a reply to: Azeban

The leading theory is either a joint operation between the AF and a three letter agency, or an agency is buying them with the sensor and taking it dark.



posted on Apr, 20 2016 @ 08:29 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

I believe just informing like you do is better than researching in the deep =) kisses and hugs



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 08:12 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

The plot thickens:


General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. (GA-ASI) will begin flight testing of an Improved Avenger in October 2016. This enhanced version of the semi-stealthy drone will enhance the Avenger’s capabilities on long endurance intelligence gathering missions carrying the new MS-177 Electro-optical/Infrared (EO/IR) sensor recently demonstrated in flight. With an increased wingspan of 23 meters (76 feet), the improved Avenger will extend the aircraft’s endurance from 15 hours to 20 hours, thus increasing the utility of this strategic reconnaissance collector over a longer period and extended range.


defense-update.com...



posted on Jun, 20 2016 @ 08:13 PM
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....They are FINALLY replacing the TR3B fleet?




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