Skip to comments.US Navy X-47B Robot Fighter Jet Completes First Phase Of Testing
Posted on 06/29/2012 2:10:51 PM PDT by moonshot925
The Navys robotic fighter just got one step closer to earning its wings. The X-47B, an unmanned stealth attack jet, has completed the first major phase of flight testing on its way to become the first aircraft to be able to land and take off from the deck of an aircraft carrier completely autonomously.
After its first successful flight on February 4, 2011 at Edwards Air Force Base a short, 29 minute jaunt to 5,000 feet the X-47B has now climbed to as much as 15,000 feet. The testing, which concluded on May 15, ran the jet through multiple maneuvers that are essential for using an aircraft carrier as its base of operations including extending and retracting a tail hook needed to catch the carriers arresting wires upon landing and touch-and-go landings.
The testing is a continuation of the Navys Unmanned Combat Air System Carrier Demonstration (UCAS-D) program, a collaboration between the Navy, Northrop Grumman, which built the aircraft, and the U.S. Air Force Flight Test Center.
The next phase of the program will be carried out at the Naval Air Station at Patuxent River, Maryland, to where the X-47B has already been transported (causing some locals to wonder if theyd seen a UFO).
(Excerpt) Read more at forbes.com ...
57 mile range? What’s the flight time, thirty minutes?
...and then Skynet became self-aware...
I bet the ADA will still require a 36 inch door and and handicapped toilet
Skynet went online and became self-aware on 19 April 2011.
14 months ago............
Yea but there’s no date on the pix so .....
Wiki entry for the X-47B quotes the range at 2,100 miles. That’s more realistic.
I saw that to. Even with inflight refueling it will spend more time behind a tanker than on mission.
Awesome, I really like it, but a attack aircraft is not a fighter. Fighters go up against other aircraft, attack aircraft hit ground targets.
A few A-10s shot down Iraqi helicopters in Desert Storm, but generally A (attack) aircraft don’t fight other aircraft.
Cool. Can’t wait for the Supreme Drone Fleet Commander to use it against us.
2,100 miles would appear to be a ferry range, BTW. I’m guessing combat radius is half that.
The only thing I can think of is perhaps it has to take off and land with almost empty tanks, and they fuel once it gets in the air. Doesn’t make much sense, except for weight savings on the landing gear.
These are the future IMO, especially if they can be built less expensively. If you have 100 of them and they can be controlled by one person and they operated semi-autonomously, who cares if they are as big as barns on a radar? A fleet of 10,000 would be formidable.
Another Freeper suggested a while back that the Navy’s new LHA’s are going to be able to carry a bunch of these X-47’s along with a reserve in environmentally sealed containers. They’ll be able to surge these puppies from a small flight deck.
Only thing is you’d have to add arresting gear to the LHA’s deck configuration. So I’m not sure about the validity of what I was told.
I was quoting the Forbes article title.
You worked at the PAVE PAWS early warning radar station in Cape Cod???
What was it like?
There you go. That’s more like it. Thanks.