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RQ-170 Sentinel UAV Revealed  
User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 911 posts, RR: 0
Posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 11078 times:

Appearantly Skunkworks has been busy!



Quote:
The RQ-170 is a stealthy unmanned aircraft designed to "provide reconnaissance and surveillance support to forward deployed combat forces." It's flown by the 30th Reconnaissance Squadron at Tonopah Test Range, Nevada, under the Air Combat Command's 432d Wing at Creech Air Force Base, Nevada.

I thought it was the X-47B that got modified during construction... that landing gear looks very beefy for a land based aircraft... the X-47B is supposed to do carrier trials in 2011.

9 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineGST From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2008, 930 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 11060 times:

Agreed, the landing gear looks very out of proportion. I wonder where the tailhook folds away to?  stirthepot 

User currently offlinePar13del From Bahamas, joined Dec 2005, 6971 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 11018 times:

It's possible it does not have one installed, build the basic frame heavy enough - materials for salt air environment - with the robust landing gear, the tail hook would be a simple addition for those purchased by the Navy, on the other hand they could install them on all and have carriers serve as floating gas stations.

On a deployment side, I wonder if the a/c will be autonomous during the mission phase, if you have a stealth a/c hard to see on radar, put up an ECM bird to monitor "stray signals".


User currently offlineGST From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2008, 930 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 11007 times:

That is a good point. If it is presumably transmitting various feeds home in realtime, it must be quite tricky to do so without letting off electronic noise that can be detected and ruin your stealth. Possibly using lasers to talk directly to satellites as if using a fiber optic cable, is that not how many submarines can get detailed messages from base at periscope depth without being detected electronically?

User currently offlineMarSciGuy From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 549 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 10885 times:



Quoting GST (Reply 3):
That is a good point. If it is presumably transmitting various feeds home in realtime, it must be quite tricky to do so without letting off electronic noise that can be detected and ruin your stealth. Possibly using lasers to talk directly to satellites as if using a fiber optic cable, is that not how many submarines can get detailed messages from base at periscope depth without being detected electronically?

Are you suggesting the ocean is lined with cables that are submerged at periscope depth that they can plug in to? I think submarines scan for any EM signals when the get to Periscope depth and then send their messages to satellite once they know the area is clear...



"There weren't a ton of gnats there where a ton of gnats and their families as well!"
User currently onlineTugger From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 5377 posts, RR: 8
Reply 5, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 10867 times:



Quoting MarSciGuy (Reply 4):
Quoting GST (Reply 3):
That is a good point. If it is presumably transmitting various feeds home in realtime, it must be quite tricky to do so without letting off electronic noise that can be detected and ruin your stealth. Possibly using lasers to talk directly to satellites as if using a fiber optic cable, is that not how many submarines can get detailed messages from base at periscope depth without being detected electronically?

Are you suggesting the ocean is lined with cables that are submerged at periscope depth that they can plug in to? I think submarines scan for any EM signals when the get to Periscope depth and then send their messages to satellite once they know the area is clear...

He is meaning that subs can receive data from satellites with lasers while the periscope is up.

Tugg



I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
User currently offlineBoeing4ever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 10859 times:

Figures the Polecat was a prototype for something.

Looks like Skunk Works claims title for first operational jet powered stealthy UAV in operation.

 airplane B4e-Forever New Frontiers airplane 


User currently offlineBladeLWS From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 403 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 10836 times:



Quoting MarSciGuy (Reply 4):

Are you suggesting the ocean is lined with cables that are submerged at periscope depth that they can plug in to? I think submarines scan for any EM signals when the get to Periscope depth and then send their messages to satellite once they know the area is clear...

Basically from what I've read it happens like this...

1.Sub picks up ELF (low freq) transmission with its ID code, it takes a LONG time to get one character so they only send the ID code to let the sub know it needs to take a message.

2.Sub goes up to periscope depth, takes a listen, then raises ESM/periscope mast to see it anything is around. If all is clear they raise the antenna and take the message.

I also think that the subs can trail an antenna wire along the surface of the water to get signals, but I think that would probably take longer to send/transmit then the pole antenna.


User currently offlineGST From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2008, 930 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 10786 times:



Quoting Tugger (Reply 5):
He is meaning that subs can receive data from satellites with lasers while the periscope is up.

That is a better explanation for what I wanted to say, cheers. As I understand it, they can both send and receive extremely detailed messages basically with a pulsing laser in more or less the same way as a fiber optic cable, only without the cable!
I could well be wrong, but I would imagine that if you mounted some similar apparatus on top of the UAV, where it is shrouded from most radar sources you could have a continuous data stream to a satellite of your choice without any normal EM signature to give you away and defeat your own stealth. I am unsure if this would limit you to operations above clouds, and in this case high cloud may just ruin your whole day, but there may be something that can shine on through, I don't pretend to be an expert.


User currently onlineTugger From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 5377 posts, RR: 8
Reply 9, posted (4 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 10638 times:



Quoting GST (Reply 8):
, but I would imagine that if you mounted some similar apparatus on top of the UAV, where it is shrouded from most radar sources you could have a continuous data stream to a satellite of your choice without any normal EM signature to give you away and defeat your own stealth. I am unsure if this would limit you to operations above clouds, and in this case high cloud may just ruin your whole day, but there may be something that can shine on through, I don't pretend to be an expert.

Well the key difference is that the UAV can't remain near motionless while the sub mast can.

Quoting BladeLWS (Reply 7):
I also think that the subs can trail an antenna wire along the surface of the water to get signals, but I think that would probably take longer to send/transmit then the pole antenna.

Now imagine a ESM/periscope mast system on a trailing wire sitting stable on the surface listening watching and protecting while the sub moves away safely at speed. Much like tow array sonar systems but on the surface.

Tugg



I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
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