A Cold War Spy Plane Just Killed Its Robot Drone ReplacementSam Biddle1/25/12 10:40amFiled to: PlanesU-2global hawkRq-4328EditPromoteShare to KinjaToggle Conversation toolsGo to permalinkThe Lockheed U-2 was designed to keep tabs on the Soviet Union over half a century ago. The RQ-4 Global Hawk drone was designed to replace this 50s antique. But how strange you are, fate! The U-2's replacing its successor.Reuters reports the Air Force is scrapping the Global Hawk program—which cost the US around $13 billion and ran far over budget (surprise!), in favor of keeping the U-2 flying into 2020. The Global Hawk is a hell of a machine, capable of sweeping the ground from 60,000 feet in the air—for an entire day at a time—with infrared sensors, picking out things to later blow up and eavesdropping on chatter.