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Scaled Composites' Proteus and Model 401 Demonstrators Spotted Flying in Formation

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posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 11:38 AM
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Hans Friedel, an aerospace enthusiast, noticed Scaled Composites' Proteus flying in an odd pattern. He then noticed that the two model 401s were in formation with Proteus and snapped a number of shots. This was apparently on June 9th. He then provided the pix to The Drive[1].

in his own words:


"I noticed on ADSB-Exchange that the Northrop/Rutan Proteus was flying an irregular pattern out over Lake Isabella. There was also a Northrop/Rutan Model 401 circling around the Ridgecrest/China Lake area. Both the Proteus and Model 401 were circling around 24,000 feet... Around noon, the Proteus and the Model 401 joined up over lake Isabella and flew in my direction towards Mojave. I pulled over to see if I could see them and to my surprise both Model 401s were in formation with the Proteus high overhead... I don't think there are any photos of any of these planes together in formation.

When I looked closer at ADSB, I noticed that the two 401s had been there all along, flying identical paths in formation. I'm wondering if the 401s were involved in some sort of loyal wingman test. The Proteus and at least one 401 recovered to Mojave Air and Space Port - not sure if both did."



It is wildly clear they are testing or simulating something. It would be interesting to see what they are. The Model 401s are interesting birds that have been bouncing around the country for acting as simulated UAVs amongst (rumored) other things. The Proteus has been a successful testbed for a long time now.

What do you guys think?


1. www.thedrive.com...




posted on Jun, 11 2020 @ 12:19 PM
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a reply to: anzha

Proteus tests all kinds of things. It's a very interesting bird that I'd love to catch some day.



posted on Jun, 12 2020 @ 04:09 PM
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ABMS



posted on Jun, 14 2020 @ 06:37 AM
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a reply to: anzha

ufo, you silly gooses



posted on Jun, 14 2020 @ 05:57 PM
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a reply to: anzha
Pretty sure they are involved in Loyal Wingman/Skyborg testing.



posted on Jun, 14 2020 @ 08:11 PM
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a reply to: intelgurl

is the other swarm type drones not being used in lue of bigger drones?



posted on Jun, 14 2020 @ 08:47 PM
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a reply to: penroc3

Swarms aren't being used for Loyal Wingman or Skyborg. They'll be used with other programs.



posted on Jun, 14 2020 @ 10:27 PM
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Loyal Wingman is not swarming. There are actually 3 different levels of drones being used as a force multiplier when combined with a manned aircraft.

Loyal Wingman: When one to six UCAVs take on the role of a traditional manned wingman and are controlled by the command aircraft.
( Related tech is at High TRL levels )

Flocking: Typically up to a dozen UCAVs with diverse capabilities (sensors and weapons) under the control of the command aircraft. These UCAVs would have to be able to act more independently than a LW drone. (More processing power required)
( Related tech is at High TRL levels )

Swarming: A more scaled up version of "Flocking" where a large number of armed Drones/UCAVs dominate the airspace with sheer numbers. These drones are generally much smaller and require a higher level of autonomy/ processing power.
( Related tech is at lower TRL levels due to autonomous requirement )



posted on Jun, 14 2020 @ 10:39 PM
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originally posted by: intelgurl
a reply to: anzha
Pretty sure they are involved in Loyal Wingman/Skyborg testing.



Good to see you again intelgurl




posted on Jun, 15 2020 @ 10:39 AM
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a reply to: intelgurl

so what do you think they will be using for flocking? modded ALCM? or something similar



posted on Jun, 15 2020 @ 02:44 PM
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a reply to: penroc3
At least initially I'd put my money on the XQ-58A Valkyrie or the Boeing ATS UCAV.



posted on Jun, 15 2020 @ 06:23 PM
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a reply to: intelgurl
I'm betting on both going through with flocking capabilities in the near future. ATS certainly has the space onboard to carry extra computing power and XQ-58 is quite advanced in development. And both have the ability to carry different types of payload. Pretty sure ATS is dimension wise longer than Valkyrie as well, so maybe it will have a dedicated bay for additional fuel, weapons or sensors. Either way I would put my money on the DoD allowing both to go through, especially if Australia is willing to fund more advanced versions of ATS.



posted on Jun, 15 2020 @ 11:13 PM
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a reply to: thebozeian
you could have something there.




posted on Jun, 16 2020 @ 03:03 PM
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a reply to: intelgurl

what i want to know is if you have more than say 2 drones under your command after taking it off auto pilot and sending it on its mission where is the processing being done? it would have to be onboard with updates from the mother craft.


for a drone to react fast enough to take on pop up targets and human flown aircraft is going to have to have so much computing power or special hardware that it will be so expensive in the bigger drones that will take on more independent operations.


with the AF REQUIRING the B 21 be dual use human flown or drone flight say to me that maybe they cracked AI or they have some really really fast comms that are passive and uber encrypted. It would be cool of the mothercraft used some sort of laser or some other DE type of connections and have all the super computer and AI on the mothercraft



posted on Jun, 16 2020 @ 03:29 PM
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a reply to: penroc3

The real goal/hurdle, will be an autonomous (or nearly so) AI management system capable of handing off tasks to autonomous/semi-autonomous assets. That's going to require processing at each level, more so for the system that is hoovering up all the sensor data, collating it into something useable, and then making near-instantaneous decisions to task the semi-autonomous assets to execute using their own level of "intelligence" and autonomy.

ABMS: "New threat X, at location Y. Dispatch asset A and B because they currently have C capability"
UCAV A and Pilot B: "OK"

For the foreseeable future, we'll see the ABMS present human operators with a list of optimal actions to be selected from. On the other end, we're rather close to simply telling two Valkyries to prosecute target X, and the UCAVS using available information to assess the best way of doing that.

Where it gets challenging, but potentially game-changing, is gathering and filtering not only AWACS/Joint STAR, etc, but all the data from other air and ground assets and MALD-V and MALD-X, and say whatever comes from the Gremlins, to include those assets in the decision -making and response for a three-dimensional space encompassing hundreds of miles of geography. Not just processing power, but bandwidth.



posted on Jun, 16 2020 @ 04:57 PM
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They had shared coded Laser spotting with the Ah64 off memory so its not a new thing..



posted on Jun, 16 2020 @ 07:35 PM
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A little different.



posted on Jun, 16 2020 @ 09:18 PM
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a reply to: Pwenroc3
Thats a little too deep of a dig for me to answer. I cant be that specific so do your own research.

edit on 6-16-2020 by intelgurl because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 04:03 PM
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Search JADC2, ABMS, DA/RC, Pit Boss, IBCS, AIAMD, NIFC-CA, etc. To see where it's headed-- the struggle is the cross-domain infrastructure.




The specific question to the individual UCAVs and individual tasks more than 15 yrs old
web.archive.org...://www.boeing.com/news/releases/2005/q1/nr_050214s.html

Now the struggle is to get an overarching system capable of making quick decisions from a vast variety of inputs, and then hand off the individual tasks to the assets best able to perform them. It's going to be a little of column A and a little of column B.


ETA, can't get the link to format, but if you copy it from a quote, you should be able to follow it.
edit on 17-6-2020 by RadioRobert because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 11:55 PM
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a reply to: RadioRobert
Maybe others on here wont get it but you sir seem to have information or extremely good wisdom. Keep digging. You are so close.


edit on 6-17-2020 by intelgurl because: (no reason given)



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