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Tonopah Test Range Oct 2013

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posted on Oct, 13 2013 @ 11:35 PM
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The panorama is still in the works. [Famous last words: I'll fix it in post.]

There were only two planes spotted. [Thank you tea baggers for shutting down the government and stopping all work at our favorite central Nevada based.]

This looks like a 737. I was really hoping it was the Comco 757, mostly because the plane has similar writing on the tail, but I'm relatively sure this is a 737. It is not a Janet since it lacks the red stripe, and all the Janet 737s were grounded at McCarran thanks to the shutdown.
commercial passenger plane at the TTR

As much as I wanted this next photograph to be some old commie plane, it looks like a blue desert camo F-16:
blue desert camo F-16

When the panorama image is finally done, the only things of interest will be a new building was added, which you can also see by comparing the google earth imagery to the Bing imagery, with the Bing imagery being more up to date. More interesting is the pile of shredded black material in the landfill along with a few boxes. I presume they chopped up something that they never want to see the light of day and buried some paperwork with it. Unfortunately, they didn't dump the dirt on top before I photographed the area.




posted on Oct, 14 2013 @ 12:27 AM
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reply to post by gariac
 


Very nice, hope to see the panorama soon.
Did you take the pictures from Mt. Diablo, or a different spot?



posted on Oct, 14 2013 @ 12:48 AM
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reply to post by FosterVS
 


These were from Brainwash Butte. Mt. Diablo is kind of a bit "in their face" given it is right by the guard shack. Also the view would be from the side rather than front of the base.

Brainwash Butte got its name from Brainwash Cola, something the interceptors were drinking at the time. They still make Brainwash Cola the last time I looked. It is at BevMo, though I suspect the interceptors got it from the Death Valley Nut and Candy store in Beatty.
Brain Wash Cola
I got a bottle once for yucks. You aren't missing much, but I'm not a cola connoisseur.

Mt. Diablo is good if you want to catch planes landing at the base.



posted on Oct, 14 2013 @ 12:50 AM
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Can't wait to see the new pano, gariac.

Just wish I could one day get over there and see some of this stuff for myself.



posted on Oct, 14 2013 @ 04:19 PM
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gariac
reply to post by FosterVS
 


These were from Brainwash Butte. Mt. Diablo is kind of a bit "in their face" given it is right by the guard shack. Also the view would be from the side rather than front of the base.

Brainwash Butte got its name from Brainwash Cola, something the interceptors were drinking at the time. They still make Brainwash Cola the last time I looked. It is at BevMo, though I suspect the interceptors got it from the Death Valley Nut and Candy store in Beatty.
Brain Wash Cola
I got a bottle once for yucks. You aren't missing much, but I'm not a cola connoisseur.

Mt. Diablo is good if you want to catch planes landing at the base.


"Death Valley Nut and Candy store in Beatty"
Love that place, I stop there every time I go through. Where else can you get candy Lego pieces, or gummy green Army men? Or almost every other kind of candy you can think of.



posted on Oct, 16 2013 @ 02:48 PM
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This is a photo of the landfill at the TTR with shredded "black stuff" and a few boxes.
TTR landfill
FYI, the blue camo F-16 is in the upper left corner of the photograph.

The panoramas are done, but uploading takes some time. This is a link to the small panorama. I suggest saving the file since it will probably crash most browsers. You can take the same url and replace "small" with "medium" for more resolution. I will upload "large" if there is room on the server. The small panoramic image is 45Mbytes. Medium is 107Mbytes. Large (if I upload it) is 345Mbytes.

TTR OCT 2013 small

The image color is off the charts. The sun was always behind a cloud and the wind was shaking everything. But there is detail in the imagery, even if the color rendition is of dubious quality.

I'm asking those Living Moon readers not to steal this pano and upload it to their crappy website. There is some arse on DLR named "Where's Janet" that steals my stuff all the time. You have to wonder what posses people to act like that. Instead of stealing my stuff, it would be far better if they go out and shoot their own images. That way we all would benefit from more timely images.



posted on Oct, 16 2013 @ 04:23 PM
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TTR Oct 2013 medium

Don't forget to do "save link as".
edit on 16-10-2013 by gariac because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 16 2013 @ 04:40 PM
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It has been suggested that the civilian plane at the TTR is N165W.
N165W registration
N165W on flightaware

A Boeing guru said the plane is a 737-200. Flightaware lists the plane incorrectly, but FAA registration has it as a 247 (i.e. type 200).

N165W on flickr

I think it is a match. The plane appears to have covers over its engine intake, which would make sense if it has been sitting at the TTR a few days.



posted on Oct, 16 2013 @ 09:00 PM
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Large panoramic image of the TTR

i'm going to pull this from the website eventually, so save a copy if you want it. Remember, to do "save link as". You will need a decent image viewer. Irfanview on a windows. The GIMP on linux, windows, and I suppose the Mac. [I avoid Apple like the plague, so I can't say for sure the GIMP works well on it.]



posted on Oct, 24 2013 @ 01:20 AM
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This is a photograph of the new building on the TTR that I cropped out of the panorama. It is the building in the center of the frame.
New building
It is not on Google Earth, but does show up on Bing at 37.790424, -116.768537.

I suppose it is interesting only from the standpoint of not having any windows. It looks like it only has doors.

BTW, please do me a favor and don't cross post this to Dreamland Resort. There is an individual that has zero respect for copyrights, and I have to waste my time policing this clown, filing take-down notices. I think I will eventually have to sue him once he turns 18.



posted on Oct, 25 2013 @ 11:01 AM
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gariac

As much as I wanted this next photograph to be some old commie plane, it looks like a blue desert camo F-16:
blue desert camo F-16



Looks like a Red Flag aggressor F16:

data.primeportal.net...



posted on Oct, 25 2013 @ 12:14 PM
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reply to post by gariac
 


Sorry for being off topic again but do you have an idea on what Grumman uses the 737 for? Ball mount on the nose and window/conformal panel on the belly seems more than just ferrying Grumman employees around.



posted on Oct, 25 2013 @ 02:55 PM
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reply to post by Sammamishman
 


It took a while, but I found a photo with what looks like a camera pod on the front of the plane.
N165W

It could be used as an avionics test bed. Typically they put the gear under development in some old passenger plane. That way the engineers can be right there and see it at work rather than deal with telemetry.



posted on Oct, 25 2013 @ 10:45 PM
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Here is a better photo of N165W:
N165W



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 03:24 AM
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Technically she is a Janet (was). Searching the CN pulled up her history as a Western Airlines bird, then as an old Janet with the bare belly scheme and the red tail stripe scheme (N4508W), and now flying for Northrop. She's no stranger to the range. What a great history.

Airliners.net Images in all her roles.

Reg. History


Here's a decent frontal image of the bird showing the front of the pod. Looks like a typical flir/targeting type pod. You see similar ones on UAV systems. I have no idea for the side/bottom system, gariac would probably have a better guess.

Front Image



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 02:15 PM
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reply to post by DesertWatchdog
 


I will order the FAA records for the plane. In theory, it should indicate the modifications.

Since the RQ-170 is/was based out of the TTR and the pod on the front looks like a typical UAV imaging sensor, one possibility is N165W was the test bed for the RQ-170 avionics or sensors. Seems a bit overkill since they could just as easily do this in a twin engine Beech.

Here is a total WAG: it is possible they attached a RQ-170 airframe to the bottom of the plane where they have that fixture? It would have to not interfere with the landing gear, and it would certainly require the FAA status of the plane to be experimental instead of transport. I'm leaning towards that is not the function, but just tossing out the idea.

I always like to point out how nobody but nobody got a shot of the RQ-170 when it was at the TTR, even though the USAF announced in the press that they were standing up a new UAV squadron at Tonopah. The TTR is pretty easy to snoop on, either via Mount Diablo (no hike whatsoever) or Brainwash Butte (a decent drive and a half mile hike). This could lead into a rant on Swiss Mountain Bat, but I will stop it here.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 02:47 PM
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There would be no need to mount the 170 to the bottom of an aircraft for any real reason I can see. Not to mention it would need to be significantly reduced in size to clear the ground. Not to mention the panels have "glass" panels. Those side panels on the 732 do match similar panels I've seen on the 170 on its belly, and also on the bottom of the nose on the JSF, just up scaled significantly.

The 170 is a Lockheed ADP bird, and if memory serves, is a descendant of the P-175 Polecat. So if the Northrop 732 is a testbed for the sensors, that would suggest some subcontracting, which would be interesting to find out. But I have my doubts.

I think Tonopah gets forgotten quite a bit. Too much in my opinion. I'm more surprised that the 170 was only spotted and photographed once at Creech, as far as I have found. I mean, that's right there... Next to all those civilians, with camera phones and cameras in general, with a highway running right next to it, etc ect. I mean come on.




gariac
reply to post by DesertWatchdog
 


I will order the FAA records for the plane. In theory, it should indicate the modifications.

Since the RQ-170 is/was based out of the TTR and the pod on the front looks like a typical UAV imaging sensor, one possibility is N165W was the test bed for the RQ-170 avionics or sensors. Seems a bit overkill since they could just as easily do this in a twin engine Beech.

Here is a total WAG: it is possible they attached a RQ-170 airframe to the bottom of the plane where they have that fixture? It would have to not interfere with the landing gear, and it would certainly require the FAA status of the plane to be experimental instead of transport. I'm leaning towards that is not the function, but just tossing out the idea.

I always like to point out how nobody but nobody got a shot of the RQ-170 when it was at the TTR, even though the USAF announced in the press that they were standing up a new UAV squadron at Tonopah. The TTR is pretty easy to snoop on, either via Mount Diablo (no hike whatsoever) or Brainwash Butte (a decent drive and a half mile hike). This could lead into a rant on Swiss Mountain Bat, but I will stop it here.




posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 03:27 PM
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reply to post by DesertWatchdog
 


You have a lot of good points regarding the RQ-170. Perhaps Northrop is working on a new UAV.

Regarding cameraphones, Creech seems to be up to date on cellular detection. Given that, I suspect they don't allow any phone with a camera as well. A lot of feds/contractors use those old blackberries with the camera not installed. Otherwise, most secure locations make you "check your phone." [As far as I know, no modern smartphone manufacturer is selling phone sans camera, so you need to buy them from a qualified DoD vendor that pulls the camera. For ipads, they pull the camera and microphone.]

I see opensignal has some hits on Creech, but the accuracy of that website is pitiful. In fact, when you zoom in, the Creech hits are gone. Cellumap, the only accurate phone signal strength website (detail right down to the make/model/os) shows no hits at Creech.



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 06:30 PM
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Ahh, ok, time to revise the idea that N165W was configured for a newer aircraft... at least visually. The oldest picture of her I have found, in her current configuration, is from May 1999... Any new guesses? heh
N165W - May 1999
edit on 10/26/2013 by DesertWatchdog because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 09:11 PM
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I couldn't find any date listed for that photo.

N165W is based out of BWI.
NG at BWI
Maybe this is the plane. Coordinates N39 11 3.89 W76 41 3.93 on Google Earth. The ES building is adjacent to the west. You can see the Northop Grumman sign for "entrance 2" using street view around
N39 11 5.34 W76 41 22.93 .

If you look at the wiki, you can see the division was owned by Westinghouse, hence that is why Westinghouse at one time owned the plane. The wiki has a number of projects listed for ES, not that this is particularly useful in helping us figure out what the plane is doing there.
NG ES wiki

Unfortunately, I don't think there are any mil-air monitors near the TTR, so it is unlikely anyone is going to catch a comm from the plane. [Note I presume the plane is still at the TTR. They didn't bother to block internet tracking, and it has no other flights logged.] There are people in Vegas that monitor Dreamland and Blackjack, so in the event the plane needs to use those frequencies, some post may show up on the Nevada or mil-air forum. Typically non-military aircraft enter the range via Dreamland (the Mercury tower) and once in a while directly with Nellis over Blackjack. But since this plane is at the TTR, I would guess if they need range time in a location other than the TTR, they would just fly south from KTNX.

You can search N165W on radioreference dot com. It has a few hits from a monitor in Maryland, but no real useful iinformation. I don't want to poach their website, but you can get a list of aircraft based as NG ES from this thread:
NG ES on radioreference.com

I'm going to look for NG press releases specific to Tonopah. It is possible they have done tests there in the past. That is, there may not be specific data related to N165W at Tonopah, but rather NG tests there.





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