X-45A prototypes snap smartly onto the runway centerline after attacks on simulated mobile missile launchers. Although the two programs are not yet competing for dollars, they are certainly jockeying for position as military planners grapple with the ever changing nature of armed conflict.
By Eric Adams
Posted 06.02.2005 at 2:00 am 0 Comments
When it lifted off the runway at Edwards Air Force Base on May 22, 2002, Boeing's X-45A unmanned combat air vehicle became the first dedicated robotic fighter to begin flight testing. The first flight lasted only 14 minutes, but subsequent testing later saw the airplane, and its twin, conduct substantially longer missions, proving their ability to fly in formation, drop warheads on simulated missile sites, and attack newly identified targets completely autonomously.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.