Via The DEW Line blog, here’s Lockheed Martin art depicting the company’s newest killer drone, the Sea Ghost. The flying-wing, jet-powered robot is Lockheed’s entry into the Navy’s competition for a carrier-launched strike and surveillance drone. Northrop Grumman’s X-47B, Boeing’s X-45C and the General Atomics Sea Avenger are all contenders.
Archived posts with tag ‘drone’
The human operators who control America’s killer drones are susceptible to the same psychological stress that infantrymen sometimes experience after combat. But better drones and control systems could help reduce the controllers’ stress levels — by allowing the people to blame the robots for the awful human cost of remote air strikes.
Armed Predator over Illinois?
As pointed out by David Cenciotti, here’s a video apparently showing an ARMED MQ-1 Predator drone flying near Chicago. Could be real. Could be fake.
The U.S. Navy has doubled down on an effort to build a hybrid flying robot that takes off like a helicopter and cruises like an airplane. The Flexrotor, under development by the Office of Naval Research and the Aerovel Corporation in Washington State, represents at least the fourth attempt to duplicate the skills of the crash-prone V-22 Osprey tiltrotor, but without the Osprey’s design flaws.
Make no mistake, this video from Youtube sensation FPSRussia is faked: a blend of pyrotechnics, computer special effects and sheer panache. Still, the DIY gun-equipped drone — actually an AR Parrot — is fun to watch and a useful preview of our robot-war future.
When one of the U.S. Air Force’s secretive RQ-170 Sentinel stealth drones crashed along the Afghanistan-Iran border in December and wound up in the hands of the Iranians, it did only “limited damage” to a U.S.-led effort to spy on Tehran’s suspected nuclear facilities.
“Something is really amiss here,” the engineer says. It has been around a week since the U.S. admitted it lost contact with an RQ-170 Sentinel Unmanned Aerial Vehicle over the Iran-Afghanistan border — and two days since Tehran showed off pictures and videos purporting to show the secretive Sentinel mostly intact and being inspected by Iranian officers.
The Diplomat: Iran’s Drone Fake?
Yesterday, videos and pictures appeared online purporting to depict the U.S. Air Force RQ-170 Sentinel Unmanned Aerial Vehicle that crashed in eastern Iraq last week while spying on suspected Iranian nuclear facilities for the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency.
U.S. officials thought about deploying Special Forces to recapture or demolish components of an RQ-170 Sentinel spy drone that went down in eastern Iran last week. “No one warmed up to the option of recovering it or destroying it because of the potential it could become a larger incident,” an official told The Wall Street Journal on condition of anonymity. If detected, the commando raid might have been considered an “act of war” by Tehran, the official added.
NATO has suffered its first apparent combat casualty of the three-month-old war in Libya. And it’s a robot.
When the pilotless, wing-shaped warplane lifted off a runway at California’s Edwards Air Force Base for the first time on the morning of April 27, it was like the resurrection of the dead. The Boeing Phantom Ray — one of the most advanced drones ever built — came close to never flying at all.