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RQ-170 - Vandenburg - Some quality underside photos

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posted on Mar, 14 2017 @ 10:48 AM
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a reply to: Barnalby

The Ethiopian aircraft in London showed just how far they've come with composites. The fact that they were able to repair that much damage, on a largely composite airframe, and return it to service, faster than expected would be amazing enough. Add that to your points, and it sure looks like they're a lot farther with them than anyone is comfortable admitting to.




posted on Mar, 14 2017 @ 11:01 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

I'm sure that was one of those of "start by laying twice as many layers of bonding glass as you think you should need, then lay twice as much as that" sorts of composite repairs. The replaced section is probably the strongest part of that aircraft by a considerable margin now.



posted on Mar, 14 2017 @ 11:19 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

I'd still do that in a heart beat.



posted on Mar, 14 2017 @ 11:24 AM
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a reply to: Sammamishman

I think any of us would, haha. It would be like a return to my art school days...



posted on Mar, 14 2017 @ 03:22 PM
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a reply to: stratsys-sws

Cool! Thanks for the info. Much appreciated.
The dielectric panel would make sense.



posted on Mar, 15 2017 @ 01:36 AM
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I heard rumors, and speculation about this thing before I retired from the AF several years ago. Sweet looking airframe.

Probably a pain in the arse for the wrench turners... newer designs usually are.



posted on Mar, 15 2017 @ 10:33 PM
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a reply to: Sammamishman

I'd also imagine something to do with the Pacific range right out there. Lot's of airspace and water to interface with other missions. SEALs is a good guess but it could be anything PACOM related. Did anyone notice FOAL EAGLE this year had some new intelligence players??



posted on Mar, 15 2017 @ 10:34 PM
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a reply to: aholic

There are interesting things going on with Foal Eagle this year. The F-35s from Iwakuni are there too, along with a SEAL unit for the first time.
edit on 3/15/2017 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 16 2017 @ 06:14 AM
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along with a SEAL unit for the first time.

Oooohhh Raider time?



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 03:23 AM
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Nice find.

There is also a very interesting and informative article about the USAF and it's apparent ambiguity to the UCAV issue.
Probably somthing that has been discussed to death by regulars here, but I found it nevertheless very interesting and informative. It's the same source, from last year:

The Alarming Case of the USAF’s Mysteriously Missing Unmanned Combat Air Vehicles

If it has been posted before, my apologies.

I am a infrequent visitor to this part of the site from the UFO forum, where I usually lurk and peer at blurry blobs, so from time to time the need to look at pictures that are somewhat clearer becomes overwhelming.

It is nice to look at something you can actually tell what is, at least roughly.

BT



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 11:16 AM
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originally posted by: madmac5150Probably a pain in the arse for the wrench turners... newer designs usually are.


I feel like Lockheed would do well to take a jaunt down the coast and poach some technicians from the surf shops. Modern rapid-prototyped stealth would be just up their alley.

Which then begs the question, why is it that nobody has tried to leverage their experience glassing together a Long-EZ to try and build a small homebuilt stealth aircraft? Looking at the RQ-170, it honestly doesn't look like it would be that hard for someone with a basic understanding of stealth shaping, RCS reduction, and RAM formulation to slap something together that would be about the size of a BD-5 or a Long-EZ and have an RCS roughly the size of an F-117 if not somewhat smaller.



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 11:26 AM
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a reply to: Barnalby

Interestingly, I just found out that the Rutan design used for the ARES program was considered LO.



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 11:36 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

I'd imagine any aircraft built from the same materials as a radar-transparent nosecone would itself be essentially transparent to radar. Now, what if you encircled all of the non-fiberglass+foam structures in their own RCS-reducing pods within a design that otherwise might not look like a stealth aircraft?

Or, what if you took your Long-EZ and threw in a couple S-ducted microjets in lieu of the piston/prop engines?



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 11:38 AM
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a reply to: Barnalby

You'd get an interesting design. I'd stick with ARES though. From what I've heard, it exceeded expectations in pretty much every area.



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 11:40 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

It's things like that which really make you wish that the Army was given CAS. The ARES seemed like it would be right up their alley, giving you a baby A-10 for barely more than what a COIN aircraft would cost. Imagine them getting fielded by the thousands, as a sort of flying mechanized infantry.



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 11:50 AM
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a reply to: Barnalby

That's what happens when you have the people involved in creating the Air Force also delineating the missions. On the one hand, these are the same people that brought us the SR-71 and B-52. On the other hand, they were egomaniac control freaks.



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 01:19 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Both of those are "impressive" aircraft. The A-10 and other slow but effective day to day operations aircraft aren't so they don't much care for them.

When the Air Force split off they should have been relegated to air superiority and tactical/strategic strikes and the CAS left with the Army. JMHO.



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 07:21 PM
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Just a crazy thought just put it out there for all private individuals and not just companies

edit on 29-3-2017 by Blackfinger because: spalling,sepling,spliiling,spelling :-P



posted on Mar, 29 2017 @ 07:24 PM
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a reply to: Flipper35

Lemay wasn't going to let that happen. He didn't even want to give up what little he did. It damn near took a presidential order to get him to agree to that. He wanted all aviation related programs to go to "his" Air Force.




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