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Secret New UAS Shows Stealth, Efficiency Advances

samzenpus posted about 10 months ago | from the eye-in-the-sky dept.

United States 87

Fnord666 writes in with this link about one the development of a new unmanned toy for the U.S. Air Force. "A large, classified unmanned aircraft developed by Northrop Grumman is now flying—and it demonstrates a major advance in combining stealth and aerodynamic efficiency. Defense and intelligence officials say the secret unmanned aerial system (UAS), designed for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions, is scheduled to enter production for the U.S. Air Force and could be operational by 2015. Funded through the Air Force's classified budget, the program to build this new UAS, dubbed the RQ-180, was awarded to Northrop Grumman after a competition that included Boeing and Lockheed Martin. The aircraft will conduct the penetrating ISR mission that has been left unaddressed, and under wide debate, since retirement of the Lockheed SR-71 in 1998."

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Imperialist madmen will kill us all (-1, Offtopic)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | about 10 months ago | (#45633851)

If the workers don't take power first and stop them.

WORKERS OF THE WORLD UNITE! SMASH IMPERIALISM THROUGH INTERNATIONAL SOCIALIST REVOLUTION!

http://www.marxists.org/archive/trotsky/1924/ffyci-1/ch01.htm

Re:Imperialist madmen will kill us all (1)

Sla$hPot (1189603) | about 10 months ago | (#45633885)

Workers. Uhm??

Yep...
All the Chinese workers stand up and fight.

Re:Imperialist madmen will kill us all (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 10 months ago | (#45637177)

Really. Everybody stand up. Oh, you are...sorry.

Anyway, this doesn't sound like a very secret project if defense and intelligence officials are being quoted about it...

Re: Imperialist madmen will kill us all (1)

hasean lave (3457353) | about 10 months ago | (#45634141)

wsss

Re:Imperialist madmen will kill us all (1)

slick7 (1703596) | about 10 months ago | (#45635439)

The machines will rise and stop you all.

What about the SR-72 (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45633859)

What I found interesting about the recent SR-72 "teaser" was that it is essentially what people have rumored for the Aurora for years now. Maybe it already exists, and "announcing" it as a hypothetical is step 1 of the unveiling process?

Re:What about the SR-72 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634093)

You will be receiving a visit soon. Please have your papers in order. Are you a Canadian? Perhaps you can explain several doctor's visits?

Re:What about the SR-72 (4, Insightful)

mrchaotica (681592) | about 10 months ago | (#45634185)

As an American, I'd be fairly pissed off if the military didn't have a secret replacement for the SR-71 already in service (since before 1998).

Re:What about the SR-72 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634411)

Fucking retarded Tea Bagger. Your days are numbered. Go crawl back under your rock.

Re:What about the SR-72 (1)

Bonobo_Unknown (925651) | about 10 months ago | (#45636877)

Don't they have already? Isn't that what all those spy satellites do better and cheaper?

Re:What about the SR-72 (1)

jittles (1613415) | about 10 months ago | (#45638755)

Don't they have already? Isn't that what all those spy satellites do better and cheaper?

Spy satellites do not always do it better. Anyone who can build a radar system, do a bit of orbital mechanics, or can navigate to this satellite tracking site [n2yo.com] can get a pretty good idea of when your recon bird is passing over. You have no idea when or where an SR-71, U2 or other spy plane will be at any given moment.

Re:What about the SR-72 (1)

Bonobo_Unknown (925651) | about 10 months ago | (#45647841)

Good point...

Re:What about the SR-72 (1)

dywolf (2673597) | about 10 months ago | (#45640285)

that article, just like this one, originated in Aviation Week.
Aviation Week is the Fox News of the aviation industry.
(in the sense of, say anything crazy to get eyeballs/ratings)

Initial Planning? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45633861)

Unmanned Aerial System Stragedy

Re:Initial Planning? (3, Funny)

ganjadude (952775) | about 10 months ago | (#45634011)

Unmanned Aerial System Strategy (for) Home Owners (on) Lake Erie?

At what cost? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45633883)

In these times of austerity it is necessary to disguise your pork barrels.

Advanced stealth technology makes this enormous barrel of pork look more like a small can of spam.

Re:At what cost? (1, Offtopic)

bradrum (1639141) | about 10 months ago | (#45633903)

I read that as "can of sperm". I was surprised someone else canned their sperm, I thought I was the only one that did that.

The difference being (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45633947)

The difference being that defense pork creates good STEM jobs with the profit being rolled into pension plans (major defense contractors being very stable and worthless for the wallstreet slime) whereas most welfare programs in the US are designed to reinforce the poverty trap.

Re:The difference being (1)

Entropius (188861) | about 10 months ago | (#45634381)

Why are "good STEM jobs" worthwhile if they produce nothing of value? How is this any better than giving people specialized training in engineering and mathematics and then paying them to pick their noses?

Re: The difference being (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634519)

Pension plans at defense contractors are going and gone for recent hires.

Re:At what cost? (1)

bradrum (1639141) | about 10 months ago | (#45633955)

On a serious note, these are only "times of austerity" for some programs. Since 9/11 went down, contractors who make hardware for spying and provide services to provide logistics/security to US personnel abroad pretty much get a blank check from the Federal government. Pretty much no elected official wants to be seem as "soft on terrorism".

The very few that question the trillions we have spent on the war on terror are called conspiracy theorists or are labeled as nut cases.

Re:At what cost? (2)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | about 10 months ago | (#45634349)

Pretty much no elected official wants to be seem as "soft on terrorism".

True - most seem much happier to appear "soft in the head".

What austerity? (1)

arcite (661011) | about 10 months ago | (#45634083)

I don't know what country you're in, but the US is not doing austerity.

Re:At what cost? (1)

rtb61 (674572) | about 10 months ago | (#45636763)

Of course it will only work if the US military industrial complex can convince other countries it will work and get them to join the game by countering the supposed threat with public displays of military technology which of course will be used to justify yet further development of more expensive military technology. Face it although diplomacy done properly prevents war, it sucks ass because there just ain't no profit in it. So exactly who is the US planning to start a war with next that justifies this first strike technology (nothing defensive about it at all).

In other words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45633891)

Its job is to continue the fine tradition of violating other nuclear powers' airspace on a daily basis.

Re:In other words (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about 10 months ago | (#45633957)

Its job is to continue the fine tradition of violating other nuclear powers' airspace on a daily basis.

If the Muzzies get the bomb it will be a necessity. This could happen - the Pakistani government could just continue its present path and become a sharia state, or Iran could develop a bomb

Re:In other words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634029)

LOL. There are only two countries in the entire world that the US needs stealth capabililty to execute deep strike missions in - Russia and China.

And another lol for Iran - which has been "mere weeks from developing the bomb" for more than 15 years.

Re: In other words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634127)

Even if the US can do in-your-face recon in most places, it's still useful to be able to do it sometimes without the other party knowing.

Re:In other words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634705)

You know Russia exports their air defense systems, right? Give them a little while and Venezuela could be a pretty tough target (oil money = S-300 / S-400 SAMs and associated radars).

Iran could surge their nuclear program pretty easily.

Re:In other words (1)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#45637075)

Venezuela's pretty much an impossible target already. Large, well-armed, well-trained militias scattered throughout a country full of terrain a Western military would absolutely hate, a population that supports its government almost as much as it opposes foreign oppressors, and the immediate halt of oil from one of the US's biggest suppliers. Plus an entire continent that would erupt if the US dared. The US hasn't even been able to put Cuba back under its thumb in over half a century, Venezuela's so far out of the question as to be laughable.

Re:In other words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45636815)

which has been "mere weeks from developing the bomb" for more than 15 years.

But if people keep repeating that, they'll eventually be right.

Then wrong again when Iran finally develops the bomb, "mere weeks from developing the bomb", but hey, the stopped clock only has to be right once.

Re:In other words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634293)

The first comment on Aviation Week (from jpreacher) stated your jingoistic paranoia much better:

Congratulations on the new stealth system. It is important to keep taking the fight to our enemies on our terms and on their turf. Great job! Keep up the good work in defense of our homeland!

How can anyone argue with such well thought-out cheerleading? Even if the only enemies we have are the ones that we create?

USA!! USA!! USA!!

So do my farts (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45633911)

...and you don't see them getting any military contracts.

Re:So do my farts (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about 10 months ago | (#45633971)

...and you don't see them getting any military contracts.

I'm afraid your problem is the treaty against chemical and biological warfare.

Pork, pork, pork, pork (3, Interesting)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about 10 months ago | (#45633967)

Does anybody really believe there's a "coverage gap" between satellites and (for example) Global Hawks? No, of course not. The SR-71 was retired because it wasn't needed, not with satellites that can read a license plate from orbit in real time. This is just a corporate handout for Northrup Grumman, we can't have them feeling left out, what with Lockheed Martin getting all the F-35 moniez.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (1)

BringsApples (3418089) | about 10 months ago | (#45634101)

Actually, yes. Clouds.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (4, Informative)

PPH (736903) | about 10 months ago | (#45634121)

It takes time to reposition a satellite. Even after changing orbits, enemy forces can make reasonable estimates about when there will be coverage gaps and plan operations accordingly.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (1)

PapayaSF (721268) | about 10 months ago | (#45636347)

It takes time to reposition a satellite. Even after changing orbits, enemy forces can make reasonable estimates about when there will be coverage gaps and plan operations accordingly.

Not only can they, they already have. I've read that the Soviets gave us a false picture of the accuracy of their ballistic missiles by timing the tests based on our satellite orbits. After the missile had been launched and hit the target range, but before our satellites passed over again, they'd move the target closer to the impact point.

And, of course, you can only reposition a satellite so many times before it runs out of fuel, and there are limits to the degree of repositioning. With aircraft, you can have it over a particular target within hours of deciding to do so.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (4, Funny)

PPH (736903) | about 10 months ago | (#45639427)

After the missile had been launched and hit the target range, but before our satellites passed over again, they'd move the target closer to the impact point.

In Soviet Russia, target hits you!

(Sorry, couldn't resist)

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (1)

dywolf (2673597) | about 10 months ago | (#45640441)

not to mention it means giving up on whateer the sat was watching previously, and it can only be done a few times.
regardless of hollywood movies, retasking a sat is neither easy, nor commonly done.

Op, op, op, op (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | about 10 months ago | (#45634143)

Northrop Grumman style!

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about 10 months ago | (#45634235)

In a worst-case scenario it could take a day or two to get imagery back from a satellite. More, if there are clouds. The clever Evil Genius will plan his Fortress of Eviltude to be somewhere where it's always cloudy. Or maybe at one of the poles. Or anywhere on the international date line. I'm told that's an excellent location for a Fortress of Eviltude, as long has half of the fortress is on one side and half the fortress is on the other side. The international date line effectively renders you immune satellite surveillance. Pretty much lets you build your death ray in peace.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (1)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | about 10 months ago | (#45634359)

Fortress of Eviltude to be somewhere where it's always cloudy.

Manchester?

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (3)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 10 months ago | (#45634255)

The SR-71 was retired because it wasn't needed, not with satellites that can read a license plate from orbit in real time.

The SR-71 was killed because of *budget cuts.
It's a wildly expensive plane to operate and needs a lot of fuel support to go anywhere and come back.

Satellite coverage isn't the panopticon you seem to think it is.
Yes they can read your license plate from space, but only if there's a satellite in the right spot, at the right angle.
Sometimes it's faster to put real eyes in the sky (SR-71 or *U-2) than it is to re-task an out of place satellite.
And despite the magic of satellite imagery, high resolution film from a plane still wins out.

*The military is currently looking at mothballing other types of fleets as a fallout of the sequester. Goodbye A-10 Thunderbolt.
**Yea, we're still using the U-2 spy plane since its introduction in 1957. The Pentagon plans to keep it in service until 2023. They're killing the drone program that was supposed to replace it.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634347)

Yes they can read your license plate from space, but only if there's a satellite in the right spot, at the right angle.
Sometimes it's faster to put real eyes in the sky (SR-71 or *U-2) than it is to re-task an out of place satellite.

Obligatory reference. [youtube.com]

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (1)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about 10 months ago | (#45634603)

I'll see your video and raise you Red Dwarf Enhancement [youtube.com] ...
Because honestly, we could just enhance [youtube.com] our satellite imagery ;)

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634799)

Why enhance satellite imagery? The N. Koreans are just taking pictures of the moon, and enhancing the reflections!

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45642203)

Easier to take pictures of american satellites and enhance the reflections from the lenses...

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634673)

During wartime (or just after bombing the hell out of a loony-state's nuclear infrastructure) you might want to have near-time bomb damage assessments. This was what the SR-71 would have been doing during a limited nuclear war with WarPac.

Also, in a conflict with China or other states you might not have any satellites -- they have demonstrated a limited antisatellite capability, and it's only going to get better. We don't have the ability to surge additional sats, so all you're left with are airborne ISR assets.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (2)

AJWM (19027) | about 10 months ago | (#45634459)

Goodbye A-10 Thunderbolt.

The Air Force has being trying to get rid of it forever. It's for close air support, not a role the USAF is fond of. The Army would love to take it over but they're not allowed fixed-wing aircraft.

Stupid turf wars.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (1)

SJ (13711) | about 10 months ago | (#45635947)

Interesting that the Army is not permitted fixed wing aircraft or heavy boats. The Airforce isn't permitted heavy armour/troops...

and yet the Navy is allowed both.

How the heck did that get worked out?

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45639729)

In every large, turf-war-prone organization, there's a small suborganization that exists to actually get shit done once in a while. For the DoD that's the Marines.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45655061)

History. Navies have had marines since the age of sail. The air force is new and only independent from the army because of politicking.

Also emotional SAC hostility (1)

Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) | about 10 months ago | (#45634953)

The histories of the SR-71 program show an irrational, tribalist rejection of anything that didn't drop bombs or refuel bombers. It's more than a little disturbing to read about.

Maybe the CIA should have taken it over. It was their program in the first place (look up "Oxcart").

Re:Also emotional SAC hostility (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45639779)

The SR-71 ultimately got killed because of logistics. It used a unique kind of fuel that no other aircraft in the inventory used. In addition to the substantial issues this created on the ground, it also needed a unique model of aerial refueling plane to fuel it in the air (the refuelers used for everything else just use one big tank for flying and dispensing, but if you need to fly with JP-8 while dispensing JP-7, that doesn't work).

Overall, it wouldn't have made financial sense even if the CIA was running it the whole time.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634689)

Sure. An S-300 or similar SAM can blow your Global Hawk out of the sky. It was never designed to be truly low observable.

Diversity of sensors (1)

Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) | about 10 months ago | (#45634915)

Neither a satellite not a Global Hawk could collect air samples downwind from Yongbyon. The Global Hawk would get shot down.

Re:Pork, pork, pork, pork (1)

dywolf (2673597) | about 10 months ago | (#45640527)

Sorry, no. Your analysis is faulty. And you don't know history.

The only thing Global Hawk brings to the table is loiter time. Its slow, decidely unstealthy. It can fill gaps in the sat coverage, much like the U2 (also still in service). But it's rather easy to intercept, east to detect, easy to see coming.

The SR71 wasnt canceled because it wasnt needed. it was canceled because it was expensive as shit to operate.
What the SR brought to the table was speed, the ability to be anywhere in the world within 2 hours, unreachable, uninterceptable. that is a unique capability that (officially) has not yet been replaced.

Eternal war... (4, Insightful)

spacefight (577141) | about 10 months ago | (#45633983)

... for eternal peace. Those funds --- ah forget it. Nothing going to change anytime soon.

Re:Eternal war... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634469)

Oh I think one thing will definitely change eventually. All these contractors will pack up all their toys and move somewhere that can pay them.

That would be priceless...

Good intelligence serves peace (1)

Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) | about 10 months ago | (#45634933)

Fear thrives on ignorance. Imagine where we'd be without spy satellites.

Re:Good intelligence serves peace (1)

cusco (717999) | about 10 months ago | (#45637095)

Living in colonies on the moon.

toasters (3, Interesting)

kaoshin (110328) | about 10 months ago | (#45634049)

This one bears resemblance to a cylon raider. Perhaps their plan is a much more sinister one?

Re:toasters (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45635117)

What is the deal with flying wings anyway? It seems like everything these days is a flying wing or close to a flying wing.

Is it more efficient or what is the advantage. As an R/C enthusiast I have flown them and they're not that fun because they really aren't very stable or maneuverable.

Re:toasters (2)

PapayaSF (721268) | about 10 months ago | (#45636497)

What is the deal with flying wings anyway? It seems like everything these days is a flying wing or close to a flying wing.

Is it more efficient or what is the advantage. As an R/C enthusiast I have flown them and they're not that fun because they really aren't very stable or maneuverable.

Flying wings are good because the entire structure provides lift, and the drag of a fuselage and vertical control surfaces is eliminated. Their shape also makes them more stealthy, even without the use of radar-absorbing materials. The control issue was always the limiting factor and was a major reason why the YB-35/YB-49 [wikipedia.org] didn't succeed. Current flying wings would be unflyable without advanced computer "fly by wire" controls (which your R/C planes don't have). In other words, the pilot's controls aren't directly controlling the aircraft's control surfaces: they are telling the computer what he wants the plane to do, and the computer then moves the split ailerons to make that happen.

Re:toasters (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45639331)

A military drone does not have to be "very stable". Computer control provides the stability. The inherent instability in the structure means it can turn very quickly - useful for avoiding countermeasures. As for efficiency, no drag from the nonexisting fuselage.

Normal planes have people in them. So you need room for them to sit in. And you want some inherent stability in case the electronics hiccup. A drone has no such issues, so it doesn't need to look anything like a plane. Your RC plane don't need to look like a plane either, although most want some stability so they won't need a microprocessor on board. So they tend to look like small planes, except for the quadrocopters.

Re:toasters (1)

Jim Sadler (3430529) | about 10 months ago | (#45640055)

I like drones and frankly would like to see them more in use within US borders. Drones can be used for very high quality crime prevention and control. We are reaching the point at which many criminals will be forced into a much more law abiding life style. Low level criminals may be slow to catch on but once it becomes clear that drones can take their freedom away they may be forced into a more normal way of life. Drive by shootings may be one of the first crimes to vanish as they are so easy to detect and long prison sentences would surely follow.

Oh, Really? (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about 10 months ago | (#45634157)

Encrypted communications channels? Redundant navigation systems? Ability to return home amid heavy signal jamming?

You know what this is... (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | about 10 months ago | (#45634275)

...Stealth Blimp. [thestealthblimp.com]

UAS? (2)

odoketa (1040340) | about 10 months ago | (#45634405)

Is there a reason we're not calling this a drone? The use of 'UAS' makes me feel like I'm reading propaganda.

Re:UAS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634711)

Probably for a good reason.

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130715/11210223804/anti-propaganda-ban-repealed-freeing-state-dept-to-direct-its-broadcasting-arm-american-citizens.shtml

Re:UAS? (2)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about 10 months ago | (#45634903)

The widespread use of the term "drone" is actually fairly new and rather media led, as UAVs, UASs, UCAVs etc have been around for well over two decades and have been referred to in those terms as well. If anything, its the medias use of the term "drone" that is propaganda, as they have managed to equate it with negative usage pretty much universally.

Re:UAS? (2)

MightyYar (622222) | about 10 months ago | (#45635635)

To keep it neutral I, for one, prefer the term Demoncraft.

Re:UAS? (1)

PapayaSF (721268) | about 10 months ago | (#45636581)

The widespread use of the term "drone" is actually fairly new and rather media led, as UAVs, UASs, UCAVs etc have been around for well over two decades.

True. In fact, by the traditional definition of the term, this aircraft isn't a "drone," a term that used to be reserved for "target drones" and other relatively unsophisticated aircraft. But "drone" is easy to say and remember, compared to UAV etc. For the media, that's close enough. It's like calling a DSL box a "modem" even though it doesn't actually modulate and demodulate.

Space is no longer a war free zone thanks to China (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45634697)

China, blowing up their own rocket, demonstrates that in event of a war with them.. the first thing they would do is take out all enemy satellites. With no spy camera's in space, GPS gone, the only way to obtain surveillance then would be good old fashioned spy plane.

In addition, satellites have a predictable orbit, even observatories are told *Not* to observe certain spots in the sky as one is their, so enemies, have already rendered their purpose of spying from space, on the most sensitive opponents, useless.

The next area of conflict this century SHALL be East Asia. The good ole' spy plane is now more needed than ever!

Re:Space is no longer a war free zone thanks to Ch (1)

gmhowell (26755) | about 10 months ago | (#45635461)

We already know the coordinates of the Three Gorges Dam.

Re:Space is no longer a war free zone thanks to Ch (1)

Cochonou (576531) | about 10 months ago | (#45637149)

The US has conducted a little experiment in 1962 called "starfish", in which they blew up a nuclear missile in space. It created temporary artificial radiation belts which knocked down a number of satellites.
The bottom line is that space has been a war zone long before China did their ASAT missile experiment.

Re: Space is no longer a war free zone thanks to C (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45637487)

USA conducted an ASAT test about 20 years earlier. So how exactly is China to blame here again?

If you don't want others to act like irresponsible bastards, stop being one yourself...

It Looks Really Cool, But (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 10 months ago | (#45635475)

How many cup holders does it have? And why were the windows painted over?

A word to the wise (don't tell anyone) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45635539)

The Air Force had better be working on detection of stealth aircraft, because other countries are working on them, too.

classified? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45636693)

How do you know that your nation's defense budget is just a welfare program for arms merchants? Easy, the top secret military hardware is advertised for everyone to see.

Re:classified? (1)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about 10 months ago | (#45639213)

Of course, there is also the perspective that the presence of the program is advertised, but not its capabilities. Most of TFA is speculation based on what Northrop Grumman could do, based on its various acquisitions and industry strengths.

Re:classified? (1)

volmtech (769154) | about 10 months ago | (#45646971)

Here in North Florida Grumman has increased the plane cleaning build size by 400%. You could park an E2 in it before,what are they planning to do in that new building with those employees they are hiring.

more significant UAV & UAS (1)

Max_W (812974) | about 10 months ago | (#45638113)

https://www.sensefly.com/ [sensefly.com]
ultralight drone (0.7 kg) for aerial orthorectfied imagery. Ten square kilometers of imagery per 45 minutes flight.

Paint (1)

coofercat (719737) | about 10 months ago | (#45638565)

Was the 'major advance' the fact they managed to paint it white? I mean, who ever thought that a huge, pointy black aircraft was 'stealthy'?

Are you really niave enough? (1)

Benders (3017023) | about 10 months ago | (#45642345)

Do you really believe the US has been without a high-altitude, high-speed reconnaissance aircraft since the SR-71 was moth-balled? You believe that the government that is listening to all your phone calls, and reading all your email has been without this kind of aerial surveillance capability? You also probably believe that if you speak out openly in a negative regard about this administration, or our Glorious Leader himself, that the IRS will not target you for auditing as well. The year 1984 may have come and gone. But it's realities are here and now
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