posted on Jun, 21 2004 @ 12:31 PM
AMERICA'S SECRET SPACE PROGRAM
AND THE SUPER VALKYRIE
Bill Rose for UFO Magazine UK
There is growing evidence that a mini-shuttle was developed shortly
after the space shuttle Challenger disaster on January 28, 1986
and that the trials began in 1992.
Operating under the mysterious Aurora Project, the system is believed
to comprise a spaceplane roughly the size of an SR-71 spyplane and
a hypersonic launch vehicle resembling the experimental XB-70A strategic
bomber designd in 1957-60. This large aircraft could perform a number
of roles, but it appears to have been designed specifically to carry
the smaller spaceplane to a suitable launch altitude.
Sightings of the aircraft described as a "mothership" first began
in the late summer of 1990. It was said to resemble a modernized
version of the highly advanced North American XB-70 Valkyrie bomber,
developed for the USAF, but never put into production. Designed
to achieve high efficiency through a very close integration of propulsion
and aerodynamics, the XB-70 could achieve a speed of Mach 3.
On September 13 and October 3, 1990, sightings of the aircraft
were made at Mojhave, near Edwards Air Force Base (AFB). Another
sighting occured north of Edwards AFB in April 1991. On May 10,
1992, a journalist with CNN saw the plane flying near Atlanta, Georgia.
The final sighting occurred on July 12 at 11:45p.m. near Lockheed's
Hellendale Facility and because it coincided with a severe thunderstorm
in the Groom Lake area, speculation arose that an emergency divert
had taken place. An indication as to the aircraft's manufacturer
came on January 6, 1992, when there was a sighting of an SR-71 shaped
forward fuselage section being loaded onto a C-5 transport plane
at the Lockheed Skunk Works facility in Burbank, California. It
was about 65 to 75 feet long and 10 feet high. The C-5 was bound
for Boeing Field in Seattle.
The aircraft was described as having a large delta wing and a
large forward fuselage. The wingtips were upturned to form fins.
The edges of the wing and fins had a blck tile covering, while the
rest of the fuselage was white. The rear fuselage had a raised area
with a black line extending down it. Some witnesses reported seeing
a long-span canard near the nose. It was said to be about 200 feet
Nothing is known, however, about the aircraft's propulsion system.
If the "Super-Valkyrie" has been designed as a hypersonic launch
vehicle, the most likely method of propulsion would be Pulse Detonation
Wave Engines (PDWEs). Operating on a different principle then conventional
ramjets, PDWEs dont't continuously burn kerosene, but detonate fuel
as it starts to leave the combustion chamber. This generates a regular
pulse which may be responsible for producing the unusual "doughnuts-on-a-rope"
contrails. The most probable fuel for PDWEs would be cryogenic liquid
methane, which could also act as a structural coolant.
At 1:45p.m. on August 5, 1992, A United Airlines 747 crew reported
a near miss with an unknown aircraft as the airliner headed out
of Los Angeles International Airport. The airliner was in the vacinity
of Georges AFB, California, when the 747's Traffic Alert and Collision
Avoidance System (TCAS) warned the flight crew that an aircraft
was approaching at high speed. The unidentified aircraft flew past
the 747 about 500-1000 feet below it at high supersonic speed. The
UFO was described as having a lifting-body configuration, much like
the forward fuselage of an SR-71, and being roughly the size of
an F-16. It was speculated that the aircraft was a drone that had
"escaped". Could this have been the secret spaceplane?
It has been reported that the spaceplane is codenamed Brilliant
Buzzard or Blue Eyes. The spaceplane has most likely
been based on NASA's X-24C proposals or the highly classified USAF
FDL-5 Project. The aircraft was also most likely to have been developed
alongside the "North Sea" Aurora. Feasibility studies by many companies
all led to the same conceptual design: A one-man delta-shaped vehicle
with a 75-degree sweep.
The X-24C rocketplane was intended to follow NASA's X-24B. At
the same time, the USAF was considering the black budget Lockheed
FDL-5 as a successor to the X-15 rocketplane, the most successful
US high-speed research aircraft with 199 flights to speeds of Mach
6.7 and altitudes of 354,200 feet. A mockup was built, and if the
X-24C was fully developed and tested, it would explain why the X-24C
was cancelled by NASA. It may be however, that the FDL-5 and the
proposed X-24C were actually "black" and "white" versions of the
Despite the X-24C being officially scrapped in 1977 and NASA and
the USAF apparently unable to produce enough money to build prototypes,
Historian Rene Francillon, in a survey of Lockheed aircraft published
in 1982, reported that Lockheed had already flown an experimental
aircraft capable of sustained flight at Mach 6.
If Lockheed had developed a hypersonic vehicle like the X-24C,
it is possible that technology was used in the development of the
"North Sea" Aurora and the spaceplane. Testing of the vehicle would
have been undertaken at the top-secret Groom Lake installation and
the decision to go ahead with constructing prototypes of the "North
Sea" Aurora and two-stage spaceplane may have coincided with the
Challenger disaster in 1986.
The commissioning of these two systems would also explain unusual
changes within the "black world" and it's "white" exterior: The
Pentagon's decision to scrap the military space shuttle launch facilities
at Vandenburg AFB, the appearance of a major black program in the
mid-1980s, and also its appearance showing up in Lockheed's company
accounts in the form of an extreme budget. Another factor reinforcing
the belief that these projects left the drawing board in 1986, is
the redevelopment carried out at Groom Lake. The old housing area,
built for A-12 Oxcart personnel, was replaced by modern accomadation
blocks. An indoor recreation facility and a new commisary were also
built. Four water tanks were built and an extensive runway upgrade
program was undertaken. Another improvement was the construction
of a new fuel tank farm at the south end of the base, which was
believed to store the liquid methane which fuelled Aurora. These
improvements were initially attributed to the "North Sea" Aurora
spyplane, but a larger hangar was built. Larger than the rest, this
could house the "mothership", the Super-Valkyrie/ Spaceplane Project.
Known as Hangar 18 by base personnel (after the Hangar 18 at Wright-Patterson
AFB, Ohio), observers claim to have caught glimpses of large aircraft
moving in and out of it prior to the closure of land overlooking
Groom Lake in 1995. All evidence points to the existence of the
Super-Valkyrie and while it's exact role remains unknown, the aircraft
seems to have been primarily designed as a mothership.
The flight testing of a spaceplane would have began with a scale-sized
demonsrator, used in a series of glide drops conducted from a converted
B-52. Although the parent aircraft was being developed, a rocket
booster may have been considered as a fall back launch system. Interestingly
enough, in 1991 NASA awarded Lockheed's Skunk Works a contract to
explore the possibility of developing a small lifting-body spaceplane.
A mockup of this vehicle was built and designated HL-20 PLS. If
it had been built, the mini-shuttle would have been an economical
alternative for transporting astronauts and pay-loads into Low Earth
Orbit (LEO). The project was abandoned in 1993 in favor of the X-33
Venture Star demonstrator.
Propulsion for the spaceplane is unknown and may take the form
of a highly advanced scramjet running on liquid hydrogen. The vehicle
will carry two crew members within an ejection capsule who observe
the outside via high definition video screens and small side windows.
Assuming the spaceplane is capable of reaching LEO this will allow
it to launch small military satellites, inspect foreign satellites
and destroy them if necessary. The spaceplane could also carry out
global reconaissance missions and deliver nuclear missiles. Current
estimates suggest that as many as five spaceplanes have been built,
perhaps costing as much as a Super-Valkyrie.
The Super-Valkyrie may have been built by Boeing in Seattle and
then transported to Groom Lake and/or Edwards AFB for testing in
total secrecy at the beginning of the 1990s. Using proven technology
and modern developments, Boeing could have built as many as four
of these motherships, costing $2 billion each with funding secretly
diverted from "visible" projects. The likely contractor for the
small spaceplane is Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works who are also believed
to be the contractors of the "North Sea" Aurora. The existence of
both programs seems to be confirmed by the way officials from Lockheed-Martin
deny their involvement with hypersonic aircraft and their existence.
Despite official denials, the CIA is probably responsible for
operating the "North Sea" Aurora and mini-shuttle programs with
support from the USAF. The spaceplane probably operates from Groom
Lake, Nevada and the White Sands Space Harbor, New Mexico, with
reports claiming that the Super-Valkyrie has occasionally visited
Wallops Island, Virginia.
From where the "North Sea" Aurora spyplanes operate is less clear,
but some of the aircraft may be based at Beale AFB which is home
to the 9th Reconnaissance Wing.
(reprinted with permission)