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The SENIOR Class

SOC

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SENIOR PROM:

http://www.designation-systems.net/dusrm/app4/senior-prom.html

SENIOR PEG:

http://www.dreamlandresort.com/black_projects/senior_peg.html

Definitely two of the more unconventional Lockheed designs from the late 70's/early 80's. Both of them are based on design experience from SENIOR TREND, obviously.

Has anything else on either of these two projects ever surfaced?
 

flateric

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Not yet so far.
 

elmayerle

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SOC said:
SENIOR PROM:

http://www.designation-systems.net/dusrm/app4/senior-prom.html

I'm pretty certain that SENIOR PROM was a competitor to the Northrop Program that became TSSAM (AGM-137A/BGM-137B). Whereas SENIOR PROM clearly builds on SENIOR TREND experience, TSSAM (under various code names) clearly builds on TACIT BLUE experience. Beyond that, I'd rather not comment.
 

SOC

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SENIOR PROM predated TSSAM by a good deal. It was the original stealthy cruise missile design, but was dropped in favor of the AGM-129 when they realized it wouldn't fit inside of a B-1B, which was the next bomber on the books at the time. The program that produced the TSSAM was SENIOR PENNANT.
 

SOC

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I did a little photo interpretation this afternoon...SENIOR PROM should be about 14 and a half feet long.

Also, I'm not sure it wasn't actually rocket powered...that'd mean that Lockheed put the air intake in precisely the spot they purposely DIDN'T put it on HAVE BLUE. You know, the place Northrop put their intake on their pole model!
 

elmayerle

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SOC said:
SENIOR PROM predated TSSAM by a good deal. It was the original stealthy cruise missile design, but was dropped in favor of the AGM-129 when they realized it wouldn't fit inside of a B-1B, which was the next bomber on the books at the time. The program that produced the TSSAM was SENIOR PENNANT.

I can neither confirm or denay that code name, but, to the best of my knowledge, the prototype program that TSSAM derived from dates to the late-70s, early 80s timeframe, essentially quite close to TACIT BLUE's time frame, and did win a competition against a Lockheed design. I was told that one drawback to the Lockheed design was a plethora of moving parts that had to be opened up for the missile to fly correctly while the Northrop design needed far fewer explosively actuated operations to be flight ready. The length of SENIOR PROM wouldn't be that far from TSSAM's length, either.
 

SOC

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elmayerle said:
I was told that one drawback to the Lockheed design was a plethora of moving parts that had to be opened up for the missile to fly correctly while the Northrop design needed far fewer explosively actuated operations to be flight ready.

Interesting...but the only moving parts on SENIOR PROM appear to be the control surfaces. Nothing unfolds, the missile was carried "as-is". That was part of the reason it was dropped-no good for internal carriage, even if they couldn't find it on radar!
 

elmayerle

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Okay, then something like it was Lockheed's entry against what became TSSAM. Given that pyrotechnic actuators are a pain to deal with (among other things, everyone who has to deal, even in passing with them, has to pass ESD and EED (Electro-Sensitive Devices and Electro-Explosive Devices) safety training each year), the fewer that a missile requires, the better. *smile* I think I could still give a count for both versions of TSSAM.
 

SOC

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SENIOR PEG can be seen in the book F-117 Nighthawk Stealth Fighter Photo Scrapbook. I knew I'd seen something similar to this before, and I found it on (what a shock!) Matej's website (which needs to be translated into English!). Check this page out:

http://www.hitechweb.genezis.eu/stealth4b.htm

About halfway down you see some C-135 variant. Above that are four images in a square pattern. If you took the bottom right aircraft and gave it a compound sweep leading edge (getting rid of the protruding forward fuselage), you're pretty close to SENIOR PEG (a heck of a lot closer than the image seen here about two-thirds of the way down: http://www.hitechweb.genezis.eu/stealth4.htm ). I'm about 75% sure that's the image I'm thinking of. Anybody else aware of a similar design that's been published? Might be the one I'm really thinking of.
 

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:) :) :) Hitechweb - every secret project in one place ;D

Okay, this "some C-135 variant" is FISTA (Flying Infrared Signature Technology Aircraft).

And bottom right aircraft is Lockheed´s ATT (Advanced Theater Transport) proposal as a competitor to Boeing´s ATT Superfrog. Some pics (first is my rendering from official drawing - i needed some better image to print):
 

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Matej

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Other variation is advanced tanker with redesigned air intakes, tail parts and strenghtened wing.
 

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SOC

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Now that I think about it that might not be the aircraft I was thinking of, the tail section is too pronounced. The one I remember seeing had a much smaller and less pronounced tail section very similar to SENIOR PEG.
 

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Dreamland Resort has an article about Senior Prom and Senior Peg. However, since these are copyrighted articles I will just post the link here:

http://www.dreamlandresort.com/

Look them up in the Black Projects section.
 

quellish

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SOC said:
SENIOR PROM predated TSSAM by a good deal. It was the original stealthy cruise missile design, but was dropped in favor of the AGM-129 when they realized it wouldn't fit inside of a B-1B, which was the next bomber on the books at the time. The program that produced the TSSAM was SENIOR PENNANT.

Actually, according to Aronstein and Piccirillo, the TSSAM programs started much earlier than I had though. This would put them about in parallel with SENIOR PROM (1981).
http://books.google.com/books?id=rzXdGpkDa7YC&lpg=PP1&dq=have%20blue&pg=PA63#v=onepage&q=tssam&f=false

This is news to me, as I was under the impression TSSAM started *after* Darpa's part of TEAL DAWN had ended.
 

aeroengineer1

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The last couple of pictures are of the Speed Agile Concept Demonstrator (SACD). I have seen a few variations of this design, but this is one of the latest that I have seen. It has been attributed to a few different manufacturers, but much of the information that I read has been incorrect on that part. Here is a link and pic describing some more of this. http://www.defensetech.org/archives/004237.html. I believe though, that the design is attributed to the incorrect manufacturer. It is an interesting project with the aim to up the TRL levels of certain technologies to a TRL5.

Adam
 

SOC

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This is amusing, found it while doing some research:

http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2005/2/10/202311.shtml

Any possible truth to the assertion that SENIOR PROM may have birthed a reconnaissance variant or derivative?
 

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Linked here because it refers to SENIOR TREND and SENIOR CROWN:

http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Aurora_aircraft (section "United Kingdom Ministry of Defence paper on "BLACK" aircraft")

Numerous other news stories are around but I failed to find the full-page scan I've seen elsewhere.

So are the 2 "Section 27" redactions also SENIOR programs?

If nothing else the fact that the UK thought UK-witnessed 'UAP' events could be attributed to one of 2 secret US airframes strongly suggests that they are/were in operational service, or at the very least dropping by Boscombe Down, Macrihanish or wherever.

I'll put £5 on one of those photos being an isosceles triangle, of course (see Mr Gibson and his North Sea adventures).
 

quellish

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SOC said:
This is amusing, found it while doing some research:

http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2005/2/10/202311.shtml

Any possible truth to the assertion that SENIOR PROM may have birthed a reconnaissance variant or derivative?

I think this was an assumption made because SENIOR PROM was flown from a DC-130 pylon like a Firebee. I have never seen any indications that it was equipped for ISR. For SENIOR PROM and SENIOR PENNANT, the DC-130 was used because it was the easiest platform to fly odd shapes from, and the crews were already set up to fly shady missions in sunny places.
 

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It's an interesting theory. Lockheed did make some of the test articles recoverable, and an object with cruise-missile range and a VLO signature would be an interesting ISR platform. I haven't found any more supporting evidence either, but the interesting bit is the part about useing it over Baghdad in 1991. Might make some sense out of the tales of an F-117 style aircraft in the area. Definitely a huge reach, but about the only way you can piece this together right now and get anything close to an ISR drone out of SENIOR PROM.
 

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SENIOR PINE was the name given to Boeing's GPX (Global Patrol Experimental aircraft), which was itself derived from the OSSA (very high altitude Ocean Surveillance System Aircraft) proposal.
 

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Stargazer2006

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Three SENIOR Class program found a few years ago in the DoD listings:

  • PE number: 03013??F
    Code-name: SENIOR SMART
    Agency: USAF
    Department of Defense program: Intelligence and Communications
    Category: Gen. Int. and Cryptological Activities

    Advanced intelligence gathering "package" (SIGINT) for aircraft such as the newly modified U-2S.


  • PE number: 0301317F
    Code-name: SENIOR YEAR operations
    Agency: USAF
    Department of Defense program: Intelligence and Communications
    Category: Gen. Int. and Cryptological Activities

    "Current U-2 flights; SYPO (Senior Year Projects Office), located at Warner-Robbins AFB, GA, (oversees all SENIOR programs, not all are on aircraft; the U-2 main logistics support depot is also at Warner-Robbins) SYERS (Senior Year Electro-optical Reconnaissance System, not only used for U-2s."


  • PE number: 0401316F
    Code-name: SENIOR CITIZEN (H)
    Agency: USAF
    Department of Defense program: Mobility Forces
    Category: Airlift

    Advanced transport aircraft -- tactical airlift; special access program.

Letter "H" seems to indicate a higher level of secrecy, but I'm not sure about that.
 

quellish

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Stargazer2006 said:
Letter "H" seems to indicate a higher level of secrecy, but I'm not sure about that.

H in this context should indicate "historical". SYPO is (one) of the offices that manages special projects such as SENIOR TREND.
 

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Interesting - particularly from the life-support and human-factors standpoints.
 

Mr London 24/7

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Stargazer2006 said:
.......
  • PE number: 0401316F
    Code-name: SENIOR CITIZEN (H)
    Agency: USAF
    Department of Defense program: Mobility Forces
    Category: Airlift

    Advanced transport aircraft -- tactical airlift; special access program.

Letter "H" seems to indicate a higher level of secrecy, but I'm not sure about that.


Of potential significance for SENIOR CITIZEN (since nothing much has ever come up other than perhaps ATT/SMUT) is a very interesting quote from a DARPA history which Quellish keyed upon in another thread:

http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,5374.msg102056.html#msg102056

...Cooper became Director. At the time, DARPA was also involved in a Special Operations aircraft for low-intensity conflict injection and retrieval."

That comment would have relevance to the early 80's.
 

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Was the SENIOR PEG designation reused?

Found a reference to a senior peg orientation meeting at Patterson AFB in January 1970. From the description it sounds like a high altitude recon aircraft.

https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP78B05171A000800030027-0.pdf
 

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IRIS was a panoramic optical camera system used in the U-2 aircraft program. IRIS stood for Intelligence Reconnaissance Imagery System.
 

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