[FoRK] archives: blackstar, the supposed two-stage spaceplane
Ian Andrew Bell (FoRK) <
fork at ianbell.com
> on >
Tue Mar 7 16:02:30 PST 2006
On 7-Mar-06, at 3:16 PM, rst at ai.mit.edu wrote:
> Or it could be that the "stealth" aspect is taking priority over
> "speed". Imagine a network of very high-altitude, highly stealthy
> drones, each capable of staying in the air for a week or more, but not
> particularly fast.
I think you've got it.
At sufficiently high altitudes you don't need to be speedy if you
can't be detected. And all truly stealthy aircraft aren't very fast,
which indicates that speed is the natural enemy of stealth (see my
last post). The real challenge is for combat aircraft, where speed
is desirable for quick-strike, dogfighting, and evasion; and where
stealth is desirable for undetected ingress to the target. Even when
the capabilities exist on the same weapons platform, though, the
concepts remain mutually exclusive.
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