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Mystery aircraft photographed over Texas

Zaphod58

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There weren't last year. It also let them test deployment ability. Two very trusted sources told me independent of each other they were there, as well as the grounding of one.
 

quellish

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Zaphod58 said:
There weren't last year. It also let them test deployment ability. Two very trusted sources told me independent of each other they were there, as well as the grounding of one.

There were Eurofighters at Nellis in both 2013 and 2014.
The Nellis threat ranges include Rapier systems, as well as other things. These ranges are (by far) the best in the world. It would be extremely difficult to justify going to the UK for threat testing.


If you want to test how "deployable" an aircraft is there are places to do so that are far more secure (for that purpose) than any place in the UK.


If a "secret" aircraft was deployed to the UK, what support assets were used? How did spares, personnel, etc. get to the UK? Where were they billeted? How did the deployed units pay for fuel? What command structure did they report to?
 

CJGibson

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'Aven't we seen zis before Monsieur?

Yes, on many occasions.

Can we expect the full-bifta tyre-kicking experience before the year's out? Paris would be nice, I might go.

Further to Quellish's observation, and curiosity on my part, are the KC-135Ts (nee Q) still in service and if so, has anybody been keeping an eye on their movements lately?

Chris
 

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Zaphod58

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Hell I'm just trying to pass on what I was told. Two people that have passed on great, and verified information in the past told me the same thing. I wasn't involved so I don't have every gory detail for you. I suspect there were other reasons, but that's what I was told, take it or leave it.
 

Zaphod58

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CJGibson said:
'Aven't we seen zis before Monsieur?

Yes, on many occasions.

Can we expect the full-bifta tyre-kicking experience before the year's out? Paris would be nice, I might go.

Further to Quellish's observation, and curiosity on my part, are the KC-135Ts (nee Q) still in service and if so, has anybody been keeping an eye on their movements lately?

Chris
Yes, and the Air Force just recently took delivery of a large amount of JP7.
 

quellish

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Zaphod58 said:
Yes, and the Air Force just recently took delivery of a large amount of JP7.

USAF, through the DLA, has contracted for a *small* amount to support research. Previous to this contract there was almost no capability to produce JP-7 at all. Half the point of the contract was to rebuild the production capability and keep it sustainable. USAF would have gotten less if it was feasible to do so AND have a continuing production capability. It wasn't. The X-51 program highlighted the country's inability to reliably produce JP-7.
 

LowObservable

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Very interesting Mr Beeblebrox.


Especially in view of emerging LRSB stories.
 

tacitblue

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quellish said:
If you want to test how "deployable" an aircraft is there are places to do so that are far more secure (for that purpose) than any place in the UK.
Don't forget what happened the first time theF-22 flew to Hawaii. Sure it could have done a simulated flight around the continental US, but they wouldn't have learned about that particular software bug. Simulations are not as always as effective at imitating the real world as we'd like.
 

quellish

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tacitblue said:
Don't forget what happened the first time theF-22 flew to Hawaii. Sure it could have done a simulated flight around the continental US, but they wouldn't have learned about that particular software bug. Simulations are not as always as effective at imitating the real world as we'd like.

My post did not mention simulation or flying around CONUS.
There are locations outside of CONUS where sensitive platforms have been deployed in the past. These locations have the security and infrastructure to support some of these platforms.
 

marauder2048

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DSE said:
Zaphod58 said:
Yes, and the Air Force just recently took delivery of a large amount of JP7.
Can you please quantify what you consider a "large" quantity? And if possible provide source info?
Thanks.
Given the current USAF trend of sourcing JetA from commercial refineries and "up-blending" with fuel additives
I can't see the use of an expensive, boutique fuel like JP-7 for a fleet of largish, reusable aircraft. For cruise missiles, sure.

Especially not when it's been shown that JetA + additives + coatings and onboard fuel de-oxygenation gets you very close to JP-7 performance.
 

XP67_Moonbat

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I regards to this big reveal we were SUPPOSED to get by now.
 

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marauder2048

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DSE said:
marauder2048 said:
Given the current USAF trend of sourcing JetA from commercial refineries and "up-blending" with fuel additives
I can't see the use of an expensive, boutique fuel like JP-7 for a fleet of largish, reusable aircraft. For cruise missiles, sure.

Especially not when it's been shown that JetA + additives + coatings and onboard fuel de-oxygenation gets you very close to JP-7 performance.
Can you specify what exactly you mean by performance and what limit is implied? Lest not forget that there is also another fuel for cruise missiles already in the system, JP-10, which offers about a 10% density improvement.
Performance of the fuel as a heat sink with a particular focus on thermal signature management.
In that regard it's been shown that JP-7 > JP-8+100 (NATO F-37) > JP-10.

The use of an onboard fuel deoxygenization system for the JetA + additives + coatings (notionally "JP-8+225") probably precludes its use on volume/weight constrained platforms like cruise missiles.
 

sferrin

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XP67_Moonbat said:
I regards to this big reveal we were SUPPOSED to get by now.
I'm still waiting for the mythical Blackstar, Flaming Pumpkin Seeds, SR-72, and RQ-180 that AvWeek assured us were real.
 

LowObservable

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The SR-72 is a project, not "mythical".


I guess we'll see about the RQ-180.


As for the others - who knows what is in the black closet, but given the handful of mice that have emerged from the mountain of 1982> black budgets, either that closet is very big or someone has some explaining to do.
 

dark sidius

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Lrs-B is in the black too, surely there is a lot of things in the black, some place like Groom are surely not for cooking :D
 

Flyaway

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sferrin said:
XP67_Moonbat said:
I regards to this big reveal we were SUPPOSED to get by now.
I'm still waiting for the mythical Blackstar, Flaming Pumpkin Seeds, SR-72, and RQ-180 that AvWeek assured us were real.
The USAF has already confirmed the existence of the RQ-180.

https://medium.com/war-is-boring/the-air-force-just-copped-to-its-secret-stealth-drone-342453e109ff
 

sferrin

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Flyaway said:
sferrin said:
XP67_Moonbat said:
I regards to this big reveal we were SUPPOSED to get by now.
I'm still waiting for the mythical Blackstar, Flaming Pumpkin Seeds, SR-72, and RQ-180 that AvWeek assured us were real.
The USAF has already confirmed the existence of the RQ-180.

https://medium.com/war-is-boring/the-air-force-just-copped-to-its-secret-stealth-drone-342453e109ff
All I saw was a lot of carefully worded insinuation by David Axe.
 

sferrin

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LowObservable said:
The SR-72 is a project, not "mythical".
Until we see anything more than artist's concepts and powerpoints it may as well be.
 

Flyaway

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bobbymike

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Flyaway said:
quellish said:
Flyaway said:

Can you point me to the USAF fact sheet on the RQ-180?
It was originally reported in the online Air Force magazine unfortunately if you follow the link now it takes you to a login screen, I'm assuming because it was back a while ago its been archived.
The Air Force Association monthly magazine is now subscription only unfortunately.
 

Flyaway

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bobbymike said:
Flyaway said:
quellish said:
Flyaway said:

Can you point me to the USAF fact sheet on the RQ-180?
It was originally reported in the online Air Force magazine unfortunately if you follow the link now it takes you to a login screen, I'm assuming because it was back a while ago its been archived.
The Air Force Association monthly magazine is now subscription only unfortunately.
Thanks. All it said was yes we are developing a drone called the RQ-180 & no we are not going to tell you anything much about it. That War Is Boring article is a fairly accurate summation of it with a few additional bits of writing by the blogger tacked on.
 

marauder2048

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DSE said:
marauder2048 said:
DSE said:
marauder2048 said:
Given the current USAF trend of sourcing JetA from commercial refineries and "up-blending" with fuel additives
I can't see the use of an expensive, boutique fuel like JP-7 for a fleet of largish, reusable aircraft. For cruise missiles, sure.

Especially not when it's been shown that JetA + additives + coatings and onboard fuel de-oxygenation gets you very close to JP-7 performance.
Can you specify what exactly you mean by performance and what limit is implied? Lest not forget that there is also another fuel for cruise missiles already in the system, JP-10, which offers about a 10% density improvement.
Performance of the fuel as a heat sink with a particular focus on thermal signature management.
In that regard it's been shown that JP-7 > JP-8+100 (NATO F-37) > JP-10.

The use of an onboard fuel deoxygenization system for the JetA + additives + coatings (notionally "JP-8+225") probably precludes its use on volume/weight constrained platforms like cruise missiles.
Thanks. I can't speak from a thermal signature standpoint, so I'm trying to understand what the driver is here. My simple thought process wants to think this is driven by lower temperature heat sink, not higher temperature coking or endotherm, as I would think you want lower surface temps to manage the signature. Is this is not the case, what I am missing here?
My understanding is that the high carbon-to-hydrogen ratio of JP-10 leads to coking problems and catalyst poisoning at relatively low temperatures.
 

marauder2048

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Flyaway said:
Thanks. All it said was yes we are developing a drone called the RQ-180 & no we are not going to tell you anything much about it. That War Is Boring article is a fairly accurate summation of it with a few additional bits of writing by the blogger tacked on.
I listened to the presentation at the time and caught no mention of the RQ-180. Nor did the Janes reporter who was there make any mention of it.
 

Flyaway

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marauder2048 said:
Flyaway said:
Thanks. All it said was yes we are developing a drone called the RQ-180 & no we are not going to tell you anything much about it. That War Is Boring article is a fairly accurate summation of it with a few additional bits of writing by the blogger tacked on.
I listened to the presentation at the time and caught no mention of the RQ-180. Nor did the Janes reporter who was there make any mention of it.
I would regard a reporter for Air Force magazine as a reasonable source. Perhaps he talked to them alone, I wasn't there. It could be anything of a number of reasons?
 

marauder2048

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Flyaway said:
marauder2048 said:
Flyaway said:
Thanks. All it said was yes we are developing a drone called the RQ-180 & no we are not going to tell you anything much about it. That War Is Boring article is a fairly accurate summation of it with a few additional bits of writing by the blogger tacked on.
I listened to the presentation at the time and caught no mention of the RQ-180. Nor did the Janes reporter who was there make any mention of it.
I would regard a reporter for Air Force magazine as a reasonable source. Perhaps he talked to them alone, I wasn't there. It could be anything of a number of reasons?
And the AF Magazine article does not have Otto quoted as mentioning the RQ-180 just the usual "overinvested in permissive area" ISR stuff which is all from
Otto's presentation.
 

LowObservable

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DSE - The point being made was that AW&ST did not assert that the SR-72 was some capability being developed and tested in the black. The report was that it was a study that had some real work behind it. Sferrin called it mythical, which is incorrect in any sense of the word.


As for the AFA: At these events the speaker usually talks to reporters on the sidelines after the talk and Q&A. That's usually recorded by the reporters and the speaker's PA person.
 

sferrin

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LowObservable said:
DSE - The point being made was that AW&ST did not assert that the SR-72 was some capability being developed and tested in the black. The report was that it was a study that had some real work behind it. Sferrin called it mythical, which is incorrect in any sense of the word.


As for the AFA: At these events the speaker usually talks to reporters on the sidelines after the talk and Q&A. That's usually recorded by the reporters and the speaker's PA person.
Well how about reporting on things that actually made it to hardware? HyFly and RATTLRS are still waiting for their stories to be told and (apparently) they actually flew them (or tried to). Given all the coverage they received back in the day (before they flew) it's a bit strange that they were never followed up on.
 

flateric

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It's hard to get access to program data that in most parts (propulsion for example) was/is considered sensitive. But when program pushing up the daisies level of openess goes down to zero.
Sferrin, with all my respect, it sounds like you want SR-72 articles never been published per se. Whats up, doc?
 

Flyaway

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LowObservable said:
DSE - The point being made was that AW&ST did not assert that the SR-72 was some capability being developed and tested in the black. The report was that it was a study that had some real work behind it. Sferrin called it mythical, which is incorrect in any sense of the word.


As for the AFA: At these events the speaker usually talks to reporters on the sidelines after the talk and Q&A. That's usually recorded by the reporters and the speaker's PA person.
According to the info I posted yesterday in the SR-72 thread NASA has just funded LM with an amount a little shy of a million dollars to carry out study work into the propulsion technology they were suggesting for it.
 

sferrin

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Flyaway said:
LowObservable said:
DSE - The point being made was that AW&ST did not assert that the SR-72 was some capability being developed and tested in the black. The report was that it was a study that had some real work behind it. Sferrin called it mythical, which is incorrect in any sense of the word.


As for the AFA: At these events the speaker usually talks to reporters on the sidelines after the talk and Q&A. That's usually recorded by the reporters and the speaker's PA person.
According to the info I posted yesterday in the SR-72 thread NASA has just funded LM with an amount a little shy of a million dollars to carry out study work into the propulsion technology they were suggesting for it.
Almost a million huh? That should get us at least a powerpoint. Probably not much more though.
 

sferrin

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flateric said:
Sferrin, with all my respect, it sounds like you want SR-72 articles never been published per se. Whats up, doc?
Not at all. Just get tired of being teased. (Rascal anybody?) And a bit frustrated by the US's continued Keystone Cops impersonation when it comes to high speed flight.
 

bobbymike

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sferrin said:
flateric said:
Sferrin, with all my respect, it sounds like you want SR-72 articles never been published per se. Whats up, doc?
Not at all. Just get tired of being teased. (Rascal anybody?) And a bit frustrated by the US's continued Keystone Cops impersonation when it comes to high speed flight.
From the early 90's to today total Black Budget spending is like $700 Billion there has to be platforms, right? Yes I am an eternal optimist of the subject.
 

mz

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bobbymike said:
From the early 90's to today total Black Budget spending is like $700 Billion there has to be platforms, right? Yes I am an eternal optimist of the subject.
The problem with black programs is that there can be a lot of waste (even when doing good work, the results might not be used for anything), and it's never visible anywhere...
 

bring_it_on

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bobbymike said:
sferrin said:
flateric said:
Sferrin, with all my respect, it sounds like you want SR-72 articles never been published per se. Whats up, doc?
Not at all. Just get tired of being teased. (Rascal anybody?) And a bit frustrated by the US's continued Keystone Cops impersonation when it comes to high speed flight.
From the early 90's to today total Black Budget spending is like $700 Billion there has to be platforms, right? Yes I am an eternal optimist of the subject.
Any good article that traces the budget and spending? The number I've read on the net point to about 15 Billion for the USAF and about 50 Billion total for the Pentagon and the CIA combined.
 

Flyaway

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sferrin said:
Flyaway said:
LowObservable said:
DSE - The point being made was that AW&ST did not assert that the SR-72 was some capability being developed and tested in the black. The report was that it was a study that had some real work behind it. Sferrin called it mythical, which is incorrect in any sense of the word.


As for the AFA: At these events the speaker usually talks to reporters on the sidelines after the talk and Q&A. That's usually recorded by the reporters and the speaker's PA person.
According to the info I posted yesterday in the SR-72 thread NASA has just funded LM with an amount a little shy of a million dollars to carry out study work into the propulsion technology they were suggesting for it.
Almost a million huh? That should get us at least a powerpoint. Probably not much more though.
Depending on the outcome of the study in the attached link below it indicates there is the possibility that this could lead onto more substantive research even getting to the point of bending metal on a technology demonstrator in the propulsion.

NASA is considering several existing turbofan engines for use in the project, including the Pratt and Whitney F100-PW-229 that powers both the Boeing F-15 and Lockheed Martin F-16, among other aircraft. The General Electric F414 used by the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet also is being studied, along with the supersonic turbine engine for long range (STELR) engine conceived by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL).

If the study is successful, NASA wants to fund a demonstration programme. Lockheed would test the dual-mode ramjet in a flight research vehicle, and try to find solutions to issues like engine packaging and designing the thermal management system, Bartolotta says.

“We’re doing this at a lower Mach number so we need to figure out what are the issues for cocooning the turbine, what do we need to do to reignite that turbine once we come down from hypersonic speeds,” Bartolotta says.
http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/nasa-launches-study-for-skunk-works-sr-72-concept-407222/
 

bobbymike

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bring_it_on said:
bobbymike said:
sferrin said:
flateric said:
Sferrin, with all my respect, it sounds like you want SR-72 articles never been published per se. Whats up, doc?
Not at all. Just get tired of being teased. (Rascal anybody?) And a bit frustrated by the US's continued Keystone Cops impersonation when it comes to high speed flight.
From the early 90's to today total Black Budget spending is like $700 Billion there has to be platforms, right? Yes I am an eternal optimist of the subject.
Any good article that traces the budget and spending? The number I've read on the net point to about 15 Billion for the USAF and about 50 Billion total for the Pentagon and the CIA combined.
http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,23615.msg240085.html#msg240085
 

flanker

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Dumb question time and i guess it has been covered by i can't be bothered to go through 25 pages;

The Texas aircrafts that will supposedly be revealed before year end; are they directly related to LRS-B? Yes, no or we don't know? (considering the recent comments that LRS-B design might get revealed before year end)
 

marauder2048

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LowObservable said:
DSE - The point being made was that AW&ST did not assert that the SR-72 was some capability being developed and tested in the black. The report was that it was a study that had some real work behind it. Sferrin called it mythical, which is incorrect in any sense of the word.


As for the AFA: At these events the speaker usually talks to reporters on the sidelines after the talk and Q&A. That's usually recorded by the reporters and the speaker's PA person.
Sure, there was the standard sidebar; Seapower, SLD and Janes were there as well. No mention of RQ-180.
 
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