The Coolest Military Gear From Skunk Works,
Phantom Works And DARPA
Eloise Lee and Robert Johnson | Mar. 26, 2012, 1:00 PMhttp://www.businessinsider.com/darpa-skunks-works-and-phantom-works-projects-2012-3#
Some of the most fantastic military innovations come from places that most people have never heard of.DARPA
, along with Boeing's underground Phantom Works
unit and Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works
, all make it their business to cook up designs from the Pentagon's wildest dreams.
The line between fact, fiction, and science & fantasy all bleed into one at the military's most secret labs
.Phantom Works made a wing that is also an aircraft.EXCERPTS:
Leave it to DARPA to come up with a flying car. Skunk Works is one of the contractors chosen to work on
DARPA's Transformer TX, a dual mode vehicle combining a drivable ground vehicle with
a vertical take-off and landing air vehicle.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Hybrid Air Vehicle is packed with cameras and sensors. Watch out.Lockheed Martin
Hovering at 20,000 feet, you may find Skunk Works' eye in the sky. With the surveillance capability of
generating a picture of what's happening on the ground, troops can also ride inside the pillow-shaped
airship with a load of equipment.
The massive vehicle uses an air cushion landing system. It can launch and land easily
in open fields, parking lots, or even on water.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The BWB and its unusual but highly efficient wing design.Screenshot/Boeing video
As an incredible hybrid, the Blended Wing Body was developed when NASA asked Phantom Works if they could
make a totally different kind of aircraft. The remotely piloted BWB is a cross between a subsonic airplane, a
flying wing, and the shape of a manta ray. It also doesn't have a tail.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Boeing Solar Eagle is part of DARPA's Vulture II program.Boeing
DARPA awarded a $89 million contract to Boeing's Phantom Works to develop the Solar Eagle. It's designed to
remain the air for at least five years using solar energy and a 400-foot wing span (equivalent to a 40-story
building) to maintain aerodynamic performance in stratospheric altitudes.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Skyhook catches the wingtip of the Scan Eagle.Boeing
Another Boeing invention, the Scan Eagle system has more than 456,000 combat hours since 2002 as a
reconnaissance drone that was used extensively in Iraq by Marines. Its counterpart, the Skyhook,
eliminates the need for a runway by catching the drone when it returns after a sortie.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~U.S. Air Force
According to the Air Force, the Boeing X-51A Waverider is an engine that rides its own shockwave at six times
the speed of sound. It's fitted to the B-52 Stratofortress bomber and is used to test
the limits of hypersonic flight.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Phantom Ray atop the NASA Shuttle Carrier AircraftBoeing
The Phantom Ray by Boeing is the future of unmanned terror in the sky, according to Gizmodo because it's
undetectable to radar and capable of attack missions. As a test bed, it will help defense
researchers figure out new airborne electronic warfare techniques, as well as the possibility of unmanned aerial refueling.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~On display in the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.U.S. Air ForceThe Bird of Prey is straight from Star Trek
The secret Boeing Bird of Prey project ran from 1992 to 1999. It was finally revealed in 2002 because its
advanced design techniques were becoming industry standard.The single-seat aircraft was made to explore
stealth technology and designs to make aircrafts less detectable. The "gapless" surface
blend into the wings to reduce radar visibility.
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