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Skunkworks reveals secret UAV

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posted on Jul, 21 2006 @ 02:16 PM
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Originally posted by MadGreebo
Code names.


Very Useful.... thanks!



[whew.... he was just kiding about leaving.....
]




posted on Jul, 21 2006 @ 06:16 PM
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Sounds like ramped up full scale production of ucavs is here. If they can design and produce cost effective functional in a year and a half then they aren't far from accepting a large scale ucav force. There was a recent article about now using injection molding for a composite plastic liquid metal which is much stronger then steel and very light and inexpensive. Once the guidance and brains are there its becomes a matter of pumping out molds and installing the guts. I will post an article link for the material and molding process. A large fleet of these with loitering and performace capabilities unheards of could monitor and strike entire regions at will. Between the stealthly aspects and the manuverability, loitering strike capability, any opposing force better hope to have their own...

Here is a link to liquid metal injection molding
www.engr.wisc.edu...

However its not the one I read I will search for it. Very cool stuff.

[edit on 21-7-2006 by American Madman]

[edit on 21-7-2006 by American Madman]


GSA

posted on Jul, 21 2006 @ 06:42 PM
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that would be a great link if you could post it american.

Posts like that are always greatly welcomed and recieved.

Oh and if it has piccies all the better!



posted on Jul, 22 2006 @ 02:45 AM
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img105.imageshack.us...

This piccie has been sat on for a long time. Its the reason why i was 100% sure of a B-2 esque craft rolling around the skys.

The sender of the pics deceased now, so i thank him in retrospect for the heads up. (Death kind of issues you a few get out of trouble cards free I think! )


Now, please be nice - Im about to go on a limb here. Its manned and two seat, with UCAV variants. Now, all we have to do is find the damned thing in the daylight.



posted on Jul, 22 2006 @ 03:29 AM
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There is an article in the New Scientist about the rapid prototyping methods used in the construction of this UAV. Apparently 3D printing methods were widely for composit parts in the airframe.



posted on Jul, 22 2006 @ 02:46 PM
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What gets me is 18 months to design & build, that is by anyones standards remarkable work for such a beautiful craft. If MadGreebo is correct (& I for one believe he is) the manned version is probably taking pictures right now over Iraq, Afghanistan & Lebanon.



posted on Jul, 22 2006 @ 03:18 PM
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I for one am not aware of any aircraft that has both a manend and unmanned version yet this has been referred to several times in this article and no one has commented on it like it is commonplace. Am I missing something or are the skeptics on holiday this weekend?


I think manned and unmanned aircraft perform two different roles and I dont see the point in having two different variants of the same craft.

(Also greebo its nice to see you werent away for long ... maybe now you are back you could respond to some of my u2us or revive your thread on blackbirds at akrotiri!)

[edit on 22/7/06 by gfad]


GSA

posted on Jul, 22 2006 @ 04:15 PM
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i cannot see the piccie you have posted Mad - is it the same as you have sent me in the e-mail? If it is, thanks for replying to my u2u, its a sweet piccie ! If its not, please tell us where you wil post it for us to view will you please??

Any how, cheers for the piccie



Oh about that article i sent along to your old addy, ive re -sent it to your new email addy.

[edit on 22/7/06 by GSA]



posted on Jul, 23 2006 @ 07:59 AM
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Originally posted by allMIGHTY
Is this picture (the hires pic) maybe taken near Groom Lake?
Too much mountains for the edwards afb, i think. Or maybe TTR?

I am fairly certain that it was at Creech AFB (Indian SPrings) where the BattleLab is.



Originally posted by MadGreebo
Now, think this flew in 2003? think again, it flew years before that. U2 pilots even repoted it because it raised concerns. Here, read this - I even gave you the link to read before.... 2002 / 2003 it was FLYING over Iraq.

aviationnow.com.../07073news.xml

people you may all have your views about me, but thank you.

I HAD THE LAST LAUGH. (oh and could not resist telling you I told you so)


The UAV seen over Iraq in 2002 that you reference was NOT the "Polecat". That was a large version of the Darkstar UAV.
The Polecat or rather "Project 175" first showed up at Creech AFB in the summer of 2003. It had not flown prior to that date due to the control software not being ready.
No sources available for this~



[edit on 7-23-2006 by intelgurl]



posted on Jul, 23 2006 @ 01:12 PM
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Heres an atricle saying that the majority of the plane was printed (in 3D).

That would be very impressive if you could just print entire planes...which I'm sure will happen in time.

3D printing has a very bright future...Imagine aircraft being printed, and having several printed every day...that would be an airforce that could/would dessimate any country, since it wouldn't matter how many got shot down...they would just keep coming and coming.


A Plane you can Print



posted on Jul, 23 2006 @ 05:18 PM
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Originally posted by intelgurl It had not flown prior to that date due to the control software not being ready.
No sources available for this~


Seems we do
Happen to have a link for Battle Lab? [I hate google]

DARKSTAR

But I like this one MUCH better... pretty little thing...


HAMPTON, Va., May 04, 2006 -- In cooperation with NASA and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, the Phantom Works organization of Boeing [NYSE: BA] is taking another step toward exploring and validating the structural, aerodynamic and operational advantages of a futuristic aircraft design called the blended wing body, or BWB.


Boeing Phantom Works X-48B






[edit on 23-7-2006 by zorgon]



posted on Jul, 23 2006 @ 06:29 PM
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Wow, Mad, that's quite an exciting picture... I am inclined to agree that senior ray as you call it exists. Being a bit of a B-2 junky I have seen numerous fly-overs of the old girl- I know what it sounds like, surprisingly loud. About two weeks ago I was out in my garden when I hear what sounds like a 737 flying over at about 20000 feet, so I look up, and I see a triangular, more diamond with wings, craft which was not multi-faceted as one would think... It looked a lot like the picture you posted... In fact that's sparked me to get off my arse and agree with your theory. What it'd be doing flying over Canadian airspace, well I live about 2 hours from CFB Cold Lake? Maybe it's doing recon over North Korea.



posted on Jul, 23 2006 @ 11:04 PM
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A B-2? Loud? Compared to what? That sparrow that just went over? I've had them fly over my head at less than 500 feet and didn't hear it until it was almost directly over me.



posted on Jul, 23 2006 @ 11:17 PM
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Originally posted by zorgon

Originally posted by intelgurl It had not flown prior to that date due to the control software not being ready.
No sources available for this~


Seems we do
Happen to have a link for Battle Lab? [I hate google]

DARKSTAR


The Air Force's UAV Battlelab is housed at both Nellis AFB proper and Creech AFB (Formerly Indian Springs Auxillary AFB on the Nellis Range).
(It has also been at Eglin in Florida.)


Also housed at Creech is the Joint Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Center of Excellence. The Battlelab and the COE were my home away from home for 2 1/2 years, up until Christmas 2005 when I left Raytheon to go to work for Northrop Grumman, I am therefore intimately familiar with the place.
Creech AFB is UAV central, most systems that have government funding eventually end up at least visiting Creech.

Project 175 was/is no different.
I'm sure it did a little time at Edwards, but Creech/Nellis almost have to be the main location for flight tests and development refinements whether for ISR, weaponized ops (or both to shorten the kill chain).

Much conjecture has been made here on ATS regarding visual stealth on aircraft - take note that this is a white and gray stealth aircraft for day as well as night ops. Somebody needs to take the hint and start digging...

Also, regarding to Zorgon's link on the Darkstar, the DS is indeed cancelled - but a larger version of the Darkstar is operational - as per witnesses in various branches of the US armed forces. I refer you to the AW&ST article that MadGreebo linked to:


The aircraft is described by a U.S. Air Force official as a derivative of the "DarkStar" (Tier 3-minus) program that was canceled after the demonstration aircraft was test flown and then declared operationally unsuitable. ... "It's the same concept as DarkStar, it's stealthy, and it uses the same apertures and data links," he said. "The numbers are limited. There are a couple of airframes, a ground station and spare parts."



The classified UAV's operation caused consternation among USAF U-2 pilots who noticed high-flying aircraft operating within several miles of their routes over Iraq, a distance they considered too close for comfort. The mysterious aircrafts' flights were not coordinated with those of the other manned and unmanned surveillance aircraft, they said.



"It has the hull form of the DarkStar, only it's bigger," agreed a U.S. Navy official. "It's still far from a production aircraft, but the Air Force wanted to go ahead and get it out there. They have to determine if the intelligence they can gather from it is worth paying several times more than the cost of the [non-stealthy] Global Hawk."



A second Air Force official who once had oversight of UAV and unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV) programs also described the Lockheed Martin UAV as a "DarkStar-like thing."

Source: STEALTH UAV GOES TO WAR - AW&ST, July 6, 2003


The aircraft described here is a large Darkstar, not a small B-2. I reiterate, Project 175 had not taken to air at the time of these sightings. These are two completely separate aircraft.


_________________________________________________

More links on UAV Center @ Creech AFB & UAV Battlelab:

Joint UAV Center of Excellence at Creech - Air Force Link

Air Force stands up UAV Center of Excellence

UAV Battlelab @ Nellis - cached Nellis AFB web page








[edit on 7-23-2006 by intelgurl]



posted on Jul, 23 2006 @ 11:30 PM
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Thanks for those links. I knew you could do it. Hope its still within protocol


Ever meet a Scott at Nellis, crew chief, instructor?




Much conjecture has been made here on ATS regarding visual stealth on aircraft - take note that this is a white and gray stealth aircraft for day as well as night ops. Somebody needs to take the hint and start digging...


Hint? Hints don't work in here....
Links rarely work in here...

Direct goading doesn't seem to work either...

Maybe the DoD has some secret weapon that we can zap em at the keyboard to wake em up...

But I will see if I can scrape up some time to dig


[edit on 23-7-2006 by zorgon]



posted on Jul, 24 2006 @ 12:13 AM
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Originally posted by zorgon
Thanks for those links. I knew you could do it. Hope its still within protocol


Ever meet a Scott at Nellis, crew chief, instructor?


Most of the time I spent at Nellis (not Creech) was in lengthy meetings (building 625) and the 2 times I got to fly in F-16's as a company perk. Once was in a Thunderbird and the other time was an F-16 from the 53rd Test and Evaluation Group. (just had to brag)

Generally, if someone is not connected to UAV's or security at Creech then I probably would not know them.

Here's the official Nellis fact sheet on the UAV Battlelab

[edit on 7-24-2006 by intelgurl]



posted on Jul, 24 2006 @ 12:18 AM
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Ok, that's just showing off now.
Lucky. I'd give my right arm for a flight in an F-15 or F-16. The closest I got was an engine run in the back seat of an F-15D.



posted on Jul, 24 2006 @ 08:47 AM
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Originally posted by intelgurl
The UAV seen over Iraq in 2002 that you reference was NOT the "Polecat". That was a large version of the Darkstar UAV.
[edit on 7-23-2006 by intelgurl]


Assuming that this is a tech demonstator developed solely by Lockheed, would the USAF allow it into service to allow it to overfly Iraq anyway?



posted on Jul, 24 2006 @ 09:57 AM
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Originally posted by gfad

Originally posted by intelgurl
The UAV seen over Iraq in 2002 that you reference was NOT the "Polecat". That was a large version of the Darkstar UAV.
[edit on 7-23-2006 by intelgurl]


Assuming that this is a tech demonstator developed solely by Lockheed, would the USAF allow it into service to allow it to overfly Iraq anyway?

Sure they would - but I don't think it was a tech demonstrator, that's what the original Darkstar was. This was the answer to the need for a stealthy ISR UAV with more loiter time than a U-2 over pre-war Iraq. Lockheed took the platform and knowledge they had gained from the unsuccessful Darkstar and applied it to fit the need.

As the USAF guy said: "The numbers are limited. There are a couple of airframes, a ground station and spare parts."



posted on Jul, 24 2006 @ 10:23 AM
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Here's another photo of Project 175...




Also, pay attention to the poster on the wall to the left of the Polecat, very interesting...

Here's a blowup:



Looks like a very fast airframe, IMO.




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