Tuesday, March 1, 2011

For some reason, I thought this would be more secret

The Navy has been developing stealthy, unmanned combat aircraft for a while now. It seems like the kind of thing you would want to keep under wraps and then, you know, make a dramatic announcement like "we have invented the sound barrier" or "all your base are belong to us."

But no, here it is, right on YouTube, making its maiden test flight:

B-2 lite?

Besides being neat-looking and, apparently, quite deadly, I wonder whether this is part of a permanent shift toward robotic combat. Not in a Mechwarrior kind of way, but just in the sense that systems like this allow generals to bomb the enemy without putting their own people in the line of fire... will battles eventually be decided by who blows up the most drones? I guess that's not a bad idea. You could certainly come up with worse premises for a science-fiction novel.

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