Skip to comments.EXCLUSIVE PHOTO: LARGE FLYING WING DRONE SPOTTED AT PLANT 42
Posted on 09/05/2013 6:19:41 AM PDT by taildragger
This picture was taken from a pilot passing through Palmdale about a 16 months ago. What appears is a large flying wing type unmanned aircraft with a dorsal intake. The wingspan appears to be right around seventy feet. The aircraft appears here in the smaller of two wide and low slung aircraft shelters, built around 2010, located by the engine test cells, just north of the Northrop Grumman installation at Plant 42.
(Excerpt) Read more at aviationintel.com ...
The mystery drone could also be the replacement for the Global Hawk (which could even be the Above Super Sentinel), giving the aircraft low observability for closer proximity monitoring and even allowing for penetration into enemy airspace (see this article for more on this concept and its relation to the RQ-170 family). This supposed stealthy Global Hawk successor, more of a survivable sensor platform than anything else, has been all but admitted to by USAF brass and industry leaders.
This aircraft could also be an un-disclosed UAV/UAS/UCAV test article and/or part of a black, spiral development program. The two side-by-side shelters, of different scales and clearly made for low slung, wide wing-span aircraft, is also interesting to say the least. We know a large facility with a 175 foot door was built-in the mid 2000′s at groom lake, maybe this shelter services that same machine from time to time. Notably, both are too small to fit the B-2 bomber, Americas only known large-scale flying wing aircraft. It is also rumored that there is at least one, but possibly multiple, half built technology demonstrators that have been recently finished, updated and flown to support the next generation bomber and other black-world developmental programs. This machine could also be one of those unique airframes. Some may also say that this is the General Atomics Avenger, I highly doubt it as it does not quite match the Avengers long fuselage and the tails would be more prominent due to their size and outward cant angle.
Above is a Google Earth screen shot of the area around the hangar in question. The shelter measures 80 feet, the larger one adjacent to it is almost identical in design and measures some 150 feet. In the shot you can see some distortion that looks almost like a quad platypus tail on the aircraft in question. I doubt this is actually the case. Most likely it is an optical illusion or that effect is caused by objects similar to the structures labeled clutter in the image. If anyone knows what those objects are please shoot me an email or comment below.
I would greatly appreciate hearing my readers input as to what you all think this aircraft is. Please post your thoughts and analysis below!
A huge thanks to SFH for sharing this unique and intriguing image with all of us!
Aviation Ping List Please...
That’s a hangar. It’s a large structure where aircraft are stored, but that’s not important right now.
Shirley, you jest!.............
If I were to venture a guess...- possible drone bomber ?
It looks more like a carport shot with a cellphone camera, from a Cessna.
Why would a top secret object be stored like this?
And right on cue, all the Airplane! jokes follow...
Thanks for making me laugh, in an otherwise horrible morning.
I have an uncle named Shirley!.................
Can't wait for this to happen!
That is out in the open. I guarantee that anything secret being worked on in Palmdale is completely under wraps in an enclosed area.
First thing that comes to my mind is swing wings, like an F-14.
Sharknado, I think...
Did he have a boy named Sue? ;-)
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