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GIGANTIC Aviation Week story, Pentagon has been flying 2-stage orbital spaceplane throughout 1990s&#
ljk4-1
post Mar 10 2006, 12:16 PM
Post #46


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Blackstar: False Messiah From Groom Lake

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Blacksta...Groom_Lake.html

Honolulu HI (SPX) Mar 10, 2006 - Many Space Cadets have gone gaga over the
report in Aviation Week that the US military has developed a secret reusable
spaceplane. It seemingly confirms a long-standing fantasy in the space
community. For years a lot of us have been hoping that some "black" program
like this will someday go public and solve all our spacelift problems.


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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Guest_BruceMoomaw_*
post Mar 11 2006, 11:31 AM
Post #47





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Bell, having now read the two other Aviation Week stories on this subject, has developed a new theory of what the eyewitnesses were really seeing:

"The second article on the orbiter has a detailed description of the
vehicle as seen by an F-15 pilot at Holloman AFB (NM). He describes the
four main engine exhausts as having a gridlike or 'radiator' appearance.

"Now this is not typical of aerospikes or any rocket engine. But the air
intakes on the F-117 do have grids over them to keep radars from seeing
the compressor blades (which give a strong radar return and a
distinctive modulation).

"So, if one was designing a high-subsonic or transsonic stealth recon
plane, one might well use grids to keep radars or IR systems from
looking up the tailpipe and seeing the turbine blades. Probably there
would still be a narrow spike of high detectability along the thrust
axis, but with a little care this axis will never point directly at a
ground radar or hostile aircraft.

"This article also describes two circular ports flanking the engines
and white cylindrical objects seen on the ramp alongside the
'spacecraft'. AvWeek interprets these as solid-fuel booster rockets that
fit into the stern ports.

"But a stealthy recon plane might want to shoot missiles backwards at a
pursuing fighter. There is a naval version of the Sparrow/AIM-120 family
that steers by vectored thrust at low airspeeds. With a little work it
could steer at negative airspeeds. Back in the late 50s the Navy worked
on backward firing missiles for P6M and possibly A3D.

"So if there is any truth to this story at all, I think it refers to a
super-stealthy but otherwise conventional peacetime strategic recon
aircraft that sneaks over key sites between passes by imaging
satellites. This operational concept makes far more sense than the
blatantly obvious orbital or boost-glide scenario advocated by AvWeek.

"Holloman would be a logical emergency landing site for this aircraft
because it hosts the F-117 wing and has a lot of secure hangars:
http://terraserver.microsoft.com/image.asp...man+AFB%7cnm%7c

"The third article about the 'Mothership' is less convincing. The author
claims that many reports of B-70ish aircraft have been sent to AvWeek,
but the only one he describes in detail is ludicrous. An 'experienced
birdwatcher' in Pennsylvania claims that a Mothership flew by her house
at only 2500' AGL, lit off its afterburners, and climbed away with
tremendous noise. Sure seems like a top-secret operation, doesn't it?"
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Bob Shaw
post Mar 11 2006, 11:37 AM
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Is it a bad sign when Jeffrey Bell starts agreeing with me?

I may have to go and lie down.

Bob Shaw


--------------------
Remember: Time Flies like the wind - but Fruit Flies like bananas!
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gpurcell
post Mar 12 2006, 02:23 AM
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QUOTE (Bob Shaw @ Mar 11 2006, 11:37 AM) *
Is it a bad sign when Jeffrey Bell starts agreeing with me?

I may have to go and lie down.

Bob Shaw


Like our president, some things are true even though Jeff Bell says them....
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tty
post Mar 12 2006, 04:45 PM
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Here it is Jeff Bell who is off speculating in the wild blue yonder for a change.

It is true that grids are used to prevent radar seeing the compressor front in stealthy aircraft. It is also true that they are not used in the engine exhaust for the good reason that they would become red-hot and make a wonderful target for an IR seeker. There are a number of other techniques for shielding the turbine face from radar.

There is no vectored-thrust version of the Sparrow or AMRAAM. They would in any case be completely (Sparrow) or almost completely (AMRAAM) useless for a stealth design aircraft. Sparrow is a semi-active radar homer and requires a radar to illuminate the target. Not good for a stealth aircraft.
AMRAAM is an active radar homer and so theoretically could be used provided you know the range and direction to the target. So I suppose it could be usable if the stealthy aircraft had an IRST system combined with a laser rangefinder.

The AIM-9X Sidewinder II has a vectored-thrust control system, so I imagine this is the missile JB is thinking of. Moreover it is an IR seeker with excellent off-boresight capability and so would be the natural choice for a self-defence missile.

However it will take more than a little work to build a missile that can be launched backwards. There have been a number of efforts last by Vympel with their R-73M, but nobody has succeded yet. Building a control system that can cope with the airstream changing from high speed in one direction to high speed other direction with an interval of essentially zero speed (and zero rudder effectiveness) within a few seconds while keeping the missile stable enough not to lose lock on the target and maintaining altitude when there is no aerodynamic lift will take some doing. The fact that the missile will be within the slipstream of the aircraft and flying backwards through it's own rocket exhaust doesn't exactly simplify matters either.

If you want another alternative explanation for those "white tubes", I would suggest chaff/flare dispensers. Much simpler, and workable.

tty
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Bob Shaw
post Mar 12 2006, 09:17 PM
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QUOTE (tty @ Mar 12 2006, 04:45 PM) *
If you want another alternative explanation for those "white tubes", I would suggest chaff/flare dispensers. Much simpler, and workable.

tty


I was thinking of that myself, you took the words out of my mouth!

As for the 'grids' - well, they're in common use on ex-Soviet missiles as aerodynamic surfaces which pop out after launch. Most memorably, though, are the self-same items on the Soyuz manned launcher - the grey squares on the spacecraft shroud are actually pop out stabilisers.

So both white tubes and grids have a straightforward explanation, particularly if it was a half-glimpsed hardly-believed view which the (pretty reliable sounding) witness had.

It all adds up to something other than a modernised X-20, though! I don't think that AW&ST have covered themselves in glory on this one (although their taste in cover pictures is, as we all know, impeccable).

Bob Shaw


--------------------
Remember: Time Flies like the wind - but Fruit Flies like bananas!
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ljk4-1
post Mar 13 2006, 05:13 PM
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Six blind men in a zoo: Aviation Week's mythical Blackstar

Aviation Week magazine reported last week that the US had secretly
developed a two-stage manned spaceplane. Dwayne Day examines the
details of the article and the quality of the evidence cited and
finds many flaws.

http://www.thespacereview.com/article/576/1


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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Guest_AlexBlackwell_*
post Mar 13 2006, 05:25 PM
Post #53





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QUOTE (ljk4-1 @ Mar 13 2006, 05:13 PM) *
Six blind men in a zoo: Aviation Week's mythical Blackstar

Aviation Week magazine reported last week that the US had secretly
developed a two-stage manned spaceplane. Dwayne Day examines the
details of the article and the quality of the evidence cited and
finds many flaws.

http://www.thespacereview.com/article/576/1

Interesting article. And D-Day is most assuredly an expert in this field.
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helvick
post Mar 13 2006, 06:04 PM
Post #54


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QUOTE (AlexBlackwell @ Mar 13 2006, 05:25 PM) *
Interesting article. And D-Day is most assuredly an expert in this field.

That's one impressive precision guided debunking.
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gpurcell
post Mar 13 2006, 07:01 PM
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Ouch, that's GOTTA hurt.
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tty
post Mar 13 2006, 07:05 PM
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Just one small point. That nuclear-powered soviet bomber mentioned at the beginning of Day's article. If you look at the pictures that were published at the time it seems very likely that the story was based on sightings of the Myasishchev 201M "Bounder", a transsonic heavy bomber that never got past the prototype stage. So the aircraft actually existed, but it wasn't nuclear powered.

Another case of "six men in a zoo", it seems.

tty
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ljk4-1
post Mar 13 2006, 07:29 PM
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This Web page has excerpts from the 1958 AW&ST article on the
Soviet nuclear bomber plus a link to a PDF document from 1963
evaluating the state of nuclear powered aircraft up to that time.

http://www.fas.org/nuke/space/c03anp.htm


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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Guest_Myran_*
post Mar 13 2006, 09:53 PM
Post #58





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Two US built nuclear jet engines at Idaho National Labs found at the Nukeworker website

These engines were built and tested since it was thought that the Soviet union already were ground testing such engines and possibly had one experimental aircraft. I mentioned this suject to friend of mine who are somewhat of one aviation buf and he said there have been something on Discovery channel about the Soviet nuclear aiplane, but I havnt seen it myself and cant say it was based on that Aviation Week article or other sources.
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Steve G
post Mar 17 2006, 02:56 AM
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QUOTE (paxdan @ Mar 8 2006, 02:58 AM) *
Lots of info about the XB-70 What an aircraft!

Worth repeating:

GregM
No one would ever believe those numbers if there weren’t an actual vehicle attached to them. Not even today. For an aircraft of several generations ago it is astonishing.



If you really want a good cry, read about the CF-105 Avro Arrow.
Attached Image
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GregM
post Mar 17 2006, 03:45 AM
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QUOTE (Steve G @ Mar 17 2006, 02:56 AM) *
If you really want a good cry, read about the CF-105 Avro Arrow.
Attached Image



I live 100km from the site of the former factory. A family cottage in northern Ontario is near one of the test pilot's home town. I know the story all too well.

I get sick to my stomach every time I think about it. I hope the country continues to NEVER forgive Diefenbacher for it - forever. Small minded prarie hick so far out of his depth he couldn't even grasp its signifigance. If he were only alive today to see what irrepariable damage he did to his own nation's economic and technical base.
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