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Design Innovations | Heavy Bombers | Materials Innovations | New Systems Tech | Rumours | Security & Secrecy | Specialty Aircraft | UAVs | USA

Popular Science on Area 51’s Aircraft

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“Aurora” concept(click to view full) “Area 51” in Nevada, USA has been the stuff of myth and legend. Known world-wide as the birthplace and testing ground of famous planes like the U-2 Dragon Lady, SR-71 Blackbird, F-117 Nighthawk, and other “black program” aircraft, it has also been the subject of wilder UFO rumours and speculation. In the October 2006 issue of Popular Science, noted “black project” researcher Bill Sweetman pieces together “The Top-Secret Warplanes of Area 51.” It covers some of the projects he believes to be underway there, based on patent filings, budget holes, and unfilled niches in the USA’s arsenal. DID would caution readers that all of this is speculation; holes in the US arsenal could be real due to neglect or priorities, patent filings et. al. may well pertain to active programs and research related to the WALRUS, J-UCAS, HAA/ISIS and other less well-known but nonetheless public programs, etc. With that said, his article makes for interesting and entertaining reading. Sweetman’s most surprising conclusion? That the Mach 5-6 Aurora wave-rider aircraft (see extensive project & budget analysis) may be on again as a $9 billion program, possibly with global strike as well as reconnaissance capabilities.

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