posted on Jun, 9 2005 @ 12:13 PM
Yes the airship skin is radar transparent, so teoretically (if the gondola has good shape) the RCS of an airship is much smaller than RCS of cargo
plane like C-5 or C-17. And again to the possible shot down topic - behind the front lines means there would be probably no or very little danger at
all. The airships don't even need to fly to the countries like Iraq, they can unload the cargo at Diego Garcia or Saudi Arabia, for example and the
transport plane like C-17,C-5 or Hercules would deliver it to the battlefield.
I think noone has mentioned another advantage of such heavy cargo airships - no need for pilots. They can be remotely controled and guided just by
GPS. The landing could be controled through the satelite or ground base personal.
The refueling is also much easier and cheaper - no need for land on airfields or tankers, the airship could refuel, when hoovering, from ships. Too
bad current airships are not capable to make let's say 350-400km/hour max, they would be ideal fuel tankers for military planes .
To the price and specs issues, I have read about an airship with 28 tons payload capacity(1500meters alt - over 80 tons at 500meters) well under
20mil.$ per piece. That means you can have 8-9 airships for each C-17 (not to mention the much lower operating costs). The speed was 160km/h max and
110km/h cruise, with range almost 10 000km.