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US Navy's Ion Tiger drone leans on liquid hydrogen for longer-lasting spy flight
engadget ^ | May 10th, 2013 | Joseph Volpe

Posted on 05/13/2013 4:30:06 AM PDT by stevie_d_64

The US Navy's quieter way to spy, the Ion Tiger, just bested its own 2009 flight record with a key assist from liquid hydrogen. The unmanned aerial vehicle had previously relied on 5000-psi compressed hydrogen for fuel, but for its latest flight test the Naval Research team swapped that out for a new cryogenic tank and delivery system that relies on the liquid stuff; a choice made for the element's increased density. With that one significant change in place, the craft was able to outperform its last endurance run of 26 hours and two minutes by almost double, lasting 48 hours and one minute in a flight made mid-April. Spying: it's not only good for the government, it's good for the environment, too.

(Excerpt) Read more at engadget.com ...


TOPICS: Extended News; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: 4thamendment; domestic; drones; iontiger; uav

1 posted on 05/13/2013 4:30:06 AM PDT by stevie_d_64
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To: Travis McGee

A green drone bump to ya...


2 posted on 05/13/2013 4:30:49 AM PDT by stevie_d_64 (It's not the color of one's skin that offends people...it's how thin it is.)
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Ion Tiger

Ion Tiger Fuel Cell Unmanned Air Vehicle Completes 23-Hour Flight

Story Number: NNS091013-19Release Date: 10/13/2009 4:34:00 PM

By Donna McKinney, Naval Research Laboratory Public Affairs

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The Naval Research Laboratory's (NRL's) Ion Tiger, a hydrogen-powered fuel cell unmanned air vehicle (UAV), flew 23 hours and 17 minutes, setting an unofficial flight endurance record for a fuel-cell powered flight during a test Oct. 9-10 at Aberdeen Proving Ground.

The Ion Tiger fuel cell system development team is led by NRL and includes Protonex Technology Corporation, the University of Hawaii, and HyperComp Engineering. The program is sponsored by the Office of Naval Research (ONR).

"The long endurance flight was made possible by the team's research on high power, efficient fuel cell systems, lightweight hydrogen-gas storage tanks, improved thermal management, and the effective integration of these systems," said NRL researcher Karen Swider-Lyons.

The electric fuel cell propulsion system on board the Ion Tiger has the low noise and signature of a battery-powered UAV, while taking advantage of hydrogen, a high-energy fuel. Fuel cells create an electrical current when they convert hydrogen and oxygen into water, with only water and heat as byproducts. The 550-watt (0.75 horsepower) fuel cell on board the Ion Tiger has about four times the efficiency of a comparable internal combustion engine and the system provides seven times the energy in the equivalent weight of batteries. The Ion Tiger weighs approximately 37 pounds and carries a four to five pound payload.

Small UAVs are growing in importance for naval missions, as they provide capabilities ranging from surveillance collection to communication links. Electric UAVs have the additional feature of being nearly undetectable from the ground. Due to the high energy in the fuel cell system on board the Ion Tiger, it is now possible to do long endurance missions with an electric UAV, thus allowing a larger cruise range and reducing the number of daily launches and landings. This provides more capability while saving time and effort for the crew.

In 2005, NRL backed initial research in fuel cell technologies for UAVs.

Fuel cell technology is being developed to impact the operational spectrum of technologies including ground, air and undersea vehicles and man-portable power for Marine expeditionary missions.

"The Ion Tiger successfully demonstrates ONR's vision to show how efficient, clean technology can be used to improve the warfighter's capabilities," said ONR Program Manager Michele Anderson.

3 posted on 05/13/2013 4:39:31 AM PDT by A.A. Cunningham (Barry Soetoro can't pass E-verify)
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To: A.A. Cunningham

I love the idea of the first highly successful ‘clean’ technology carrying a mini-gun.


4 posted on 05/13/2013 5:09:50 AM PDT by Track9 (hey Kalid.. kalid.. bang you're dead)
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To: Track9

I would think it would carry a laser target painter allowing it to designate targets for smart bombs.

If launched from an aircraft the drone could loiter over targets and provide more or less real time bomb damage assessment.


5 posted on 05/13/2013 5:15:53 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 .....History is a process, not an event)
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To: A.A. Cunningham

Why can’t we develop dirigibles based on this technology?


6 posted on 05/13/2013 5:22:00 AM PDT by HChampagne
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To: HChampagne
Report: Army Cancels Hybrid Airship Project [Updated]
7 posted on 05/13/2013 5:29:45 AM PDT by A.A. Cunningham (Barry Soetoro can't pass E-verify)
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To: stevie_d_64

48 hours of continuous flight.

Because spying on right wing extremists from nine to five just isn’t an option.


8 posted on 05/13/2013 5:32:40 AM PDT by Pan_Yan (I believe in God. All else is dubious.)
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To: A.A. Cunningham
Spy Balloons Become Part of the Afghanistan Landscape, Stirring Unease

KABUL, Afghanistan — The traders crouched beneath the walls of an old fort, hunkered down with the sheep and goats as they talked, eyes nervously flitting up from time to time at the blimp that has become their constant overseer.

...

The dirigible, a white 117-foot-long surveillance balloon called an aerostat by the military, and scores more like it at almost every military base in the country, have become constant features of the skies over Kabul and Kandahar, and anywhere else American troops are concentrated or interested in.

Shimmering more than 1,500 feet up in the daytime haze, or each visible as a single light blinking at night, the balloons, with infrared and color video cameras, are central players in the American military’s shift toward using technology for surveillance and intelligence.

9 posted on 05/13/2013 5:38:59 AM PDT by Pan_Yan (I believe in God. All else is dubious.)
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To: stevie_d_64

Nice, catching up to the technology used on the Space Shuttle (and Apollo before that).


10 posted on 05/13/2013 5:45:30 AM PDT by BobL (Look up "CSCOPE" if you want to see something really scary)
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To: stevie_d_64

It’s the Ion the Tiger, it’s the thrill of the flight, standing up to the challenge of our rivals......


11 posted on 05/13/2013 5:52:22 AM PDT by edpc (Wilby 2016)
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To: stevie_d_64; Travis McGee

NAVY: Where was USS “John C. Stennis” during the Benghazi-Gate and who was its Commander???


12 posted on 05/13/2013 6:14:04 AM PDT by danamco (-)
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To: stevie_d_64

“Spying: it’s not only good for the government, it’s good for the environment, too.”

The author must not really know how to get pure hydrogen...much less liquify it.


13 posted on 05/13/2013 6:24:18 AM PDT by lacrew (Mr. Soetoro, we regret to inform you that your race card is over the credit limit.)
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To: edpc
LOL, it’s been a while since I listened to something similar to that.
14 posted on 05/13/2013 6:40:49 AM PDT by FreedomOfExpression
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To: stevie_d_64
Green drone? NOT BLOODY LIKELY!!!! Where did the energy to make that hydrogen come from?

A power plant that burns hydrocarbons perhaps? I double the plant is hooked up to a solar array (Where's the energy come to build those cells eh? Another story, with similar basis - hydrocarbons! That’s where.), or wind farm (More hydrocarbons!), a hydro-electric plant (The only one so far that generated more energy than the hydrocarbon used in it's creation or destruction.), or maybe a nuclear plant (The jury’s still out on if nuclear plants generate their base hydrocarbon load for construction and destruction yet.).

Anyway, it's BS! There is NO WAY that a pure hydrogen process is more efficient than an ideal system: It takes MORE energy to split water than the available energy recovered for work!

Pesky thing is electrolysis and entropy...

15 posted on 05/13/2013 7:48:23 AM PDT by Freeport (The proper application of high explosives will remove all obstacles.)
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To: danamco

That was Rear Admiral Charles M. Gaouette...

The location of the battle group under his command is questionable...But rumor has it that the BG was close enough to warrant the closing of the gap between their position at the onset of the news of the attack...

A commanding officer has the authority to do what it takes to ensure the safety of the men and women under their command, and responds as SOP and ROE dictates...they close the distance in this case and await authorization from NCA (the president) to conduct CBA (cross border) ops as the situation or orders specify...

The first job which apparently he (Admiral Gaouette) was initiating was to close the distance, making it logistically feasible to conduct sustainable operations if need be...It is a prudent action to take and one given liberty to commanding officers to do, while waiting for the civilian authority to give permission or “stand down” orders to the contrary...

From what I hear, and little of it, he was relieved of command for even initiating the course change in response to the attack...The same was done to AFRICOM General Hamm as well...

It would be really interesting to see these two flag officers deposed before a congressional hearing on the matter, I have always wanted to hear their side of the story...

Back in the day Mr. Gaouette and a few of us ply’d the same water when I was in the fleet...He was competent then, and I see no reson that he acted outside of his authority or standing orders during the initial actions in this incident...I’d still go to war with this guy any day...


16 posted on 05/13/2013 8:35:33 AM PDT by stevie_d_64 (It's not the color of one's skin that offends people...it's how thin it is.)
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To: HChampagne

They are big, hard to hide, not stealthy, and hard to defend...


17 posted on 05/13/2013 8:37:20 AM PDT by stevie_d_64 (It's not the color of one's skin that offends people...it's how thin it is.)
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To: stevie_d_64

Used one of your links to go over to Endgadget, and the site locked up my browser. I had to force my browser closed, and then I couldn’t restart my browser, because it went back to the same site. Took my about ten minutes to fix it, and I couldn’t reboot because I was downloading a big file.

Just wanted to mention it so others might avoid that particular web page.

There isn’t any additional information over there that I noticed before the freeze.


18 posted on 05/13/2013 8:47:48 AM PDT by DoughtyOne (Leftist, Progressive, Socialist, Communist, fundamentalist Islamic policies, the death of a nation.)
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To: stevie_d_64

BTW: I use Firefox...


19 posted on 05/13/2013 8:48:13 AM PDT by DoughtyOne (Leftist, Progressive, Socialist, Communist, fundamentalist Islamic policies, the death of a nation.)
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To: DoughtyOne

Oops, sorry that gave you a bumpy ride...

I didn’t have a problem when I first visited the link/URL...I’m still using IE for browsing...


20 posted on 05/13/2013 8:52:52 AM PDT by stevie_d_64 (It's not the color of one's skin that offends people...it's how thin it is.)
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To: stevie_d_64

No problem. I’m not sure what caused it. All I know is I got tied up over there and couldn’t shake it for a while.


21 posted on 05/13/2013 9:58:16 AM PDT by DoughtyOne (Leftist, Progressive, Socialist, Communist, fundamentalist Islamic policies, the death of a nation.)
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To: stevie_d_64

I have a strong feeling he was removed, also Carter Ham and to some extent Petreus getting the “silent” treatments by intimidating pressure to be out of the way so they can’t be questioned!!!


22 posted on 05/13/2013 1:21:57 PM PDT by danamco (-)
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