It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Mystery drone at Palmdale?

page: 1

log in


posted on Jun, 15 2012 @ 08:27 PM
On the same day that the RQ-170 Sentinel crashed in Iran, a satellite photo of Lockheed's Plant 42 at Palmdale showed what appears to be a mystery UAV. It's shape is similar to that of the Sentinel, but the wingspan is larger. One source thinks it may be the P.420. It's sitting next to an F-16 mockup on the ramp.

If you point your Google Earth client towards Palmdale, California, you will find a very interesting imagery signature at Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Development Program Facility.

Widely known as “Skunk Works” LM’s Advanced Development Program Facility is where some of the most adveniristic “black projects” are developed.

Although it’s a bit hard to believe that any new drone (or secret variant of a known one) would be quietly sitting open-air for any satellite to see, what Open Source GEOINT has found is at least worth a mention.

Located next to an F-16 (mock-up?), there is a covered object whose shape is quite similar to the one of the RQ-170 Sentinel, the stealthy drone captured in Iran at the beginning of December 2011.

The wingspan exceeds the one of a radar evading Sentinel and the left wing appears to be slightly broken, as if the packaged drone was damaged.

My colleague Zach Rosenberg found this interesting satellite image of Lockheed Martin's facility at Plant 42 in Palmdale, California. It looks a lot like a RQ-170, but bigger... in fact, the shape--from what we can make out--looks a lot like the P.420. But who knows? It's not like they're going to tell us what it is...

The Flight link also includes a patent for an aircraft with a remarkably similar planform as the covered UAS.
edit on 6/15/2012 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 15 2012 @ 08:29 PM
Looks like something under a tarp.

cant really tell what but looks like that new drone they saw in DC.

I remember seeing the Black bird documentaries from people at ARea 51 at the time, and they said they put mock ups there all the time to fool that Sats, and also cover aircraft when they know sats are flying over.
edit on 15-6-2012 by benrl because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 15 2012 @ 08:32 PM
Cool thread. Cool pic. Knowing (what little) we do of LM's black projects, both successful and not, I'd say anything is possible, right? Who''s to say what is what, and what not, unless you're an insider.

posted on Jun, 15 2012 @ 08:36 PM
reply to post by benrl

Covering up aircraft has been going on since the first satellite was launched, so that's nothing new. This cover appears to be a little tighter than most, so it gives us a basic planform for it. The wingspan could be a guestimate, as there could be something under the cover to make it appear to be bigger, but I'm guessing it's pretty close to accurate.

posted on Jun, 15 2012 @ 08:44 PM
reply to post by Zaphod58

I always pay attention to the #42. It really is the answer to everything you know.

posted on Jun, 15 2012 @ 08:54 PM
lol, why hide 'em? After all, we will see 'em flying above us soon enough.

posted on Jun, 15 2012 @ 08:56 PM
reply to post by ObservingTheWorld

If it's anything like the Sentinel, no we won't. The first reports of the RQ-170 were from U-2 pilots of an unknown aircraft flying at the same altitude. That means they were really high, which means we won't see them flying over us.

posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 02:13 AM
There's a new shot of Plant 42 on Google, and now there's two of these drones setting out.

posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 02:43 AM

Originally posted by norb85
There's a new shot of Plant 42 on Google, and now there's two of these drones setting out.

Are you seeing the diamond shaped aircraft/mockup?

I don't see the other though.

posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 03:36 AM
reply to post by TDawgRex
34°37'22.12"N 118° 6'25.39"W Beside the Lockheed Martin Advanced Development Program Facility.

posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 09:00 PM
reply to post by norb85

Did you notice the two Dreamliners that were retired there?

posted on Nov, 23 2012 @ 09:49 PM
reply to post by Zaphod58

I think this might connect to a thread I posted a couple of weeks ago. It was regarding the UAV industry in North San Diego County and it emphasized the preeminence of the the industry in concert with UCSD. One of the problems that the industry faces in this area is FAA flight paths for the testing of these drones. The article went on to state that they had been forced to use the airspace in Palmdale/Lancaster areas for their testing.

link to article in the San Diego Union Tribune

In that OP that I started was a result of actually seeing a drone flying over north inland San Diego county and was wondering why that would be happening after my reading just a day or two earlier that there weren't any flight paths that the FAA would approve for the testing.

Anyway my OP is at located here

new topics

top topics


log in