Lockheed Skunk Works' X-44A Flying-Wing Drone Revealed

Sub-scale and Full-Scale Aerial Targets and RPAs - Remotely-Piloted Aircraft
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rheonomic

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Unread post03 Feb 2018, 18:14

http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/18 ... e-revealed

Tyler Rogaway wrote:An aircraft that represents a missing technological link between Lockheed's abortive "Tier III-" RQ-3 Darkstar unmanned penetrating and long-loitering spy aircraft and the company's history making RQ-170 Sentinel is now coming to light. This previously unknown (to the public) flying-wing drone was built by Lockheed Skunk Works in 1999, shortly after the RQ-3 program vanished.

This new program, which aimed to prove rapid manufacturing technologies and penetrating aerial reconnaissance capabilities, as well as the aerodynamic validity of a relatively small, tailless, swept-wing drone, was dubbed the X-44A and first took to the skies in 2001.

A patent dated 1996 and belonging to Lockheed has been identified as the real X-44A's design, or at least very close to it. The X-44's skin is supposedly made out of nano-carbon fiber and it's powered by a Williams F112 turbojet engine. The F112 powerplant is used in cruise missiles, such as the stealthy AGM-129, but it has also been used in other unmanned technology demonstrators, like the McDonnell Douglas's X-36 and Boeing's X-50.


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Seems more like a rumor at this point.
"You could do that, but it would be wrong."
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Unread post25 Mar 2018, 23:15

"You could do that, but it would be wrong."

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