We often think of drones as distant hovering sparrows in the sky, buzzing and cooing, firing off the occasional Hellfire missile. But they're enormous flying machines with massive wingspans. And when they crash, they sure leave a giant flaming mark.
The 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.
I keep forgetting about how damn huge some drones are. Most people think they are tiny, like toy planes. As this photo of a Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk shows, they are actually big. Big as in pretty damn huge.
An unmanned Global Hawk recon drone will join a team of aircraft—all equipped with advanced weather instrumentation—to observe the 2010 storm season closer than ever before.
In mid-June, a single-turbine helicopter took off from a test field in Mesa, Arizona, avoided obstacles in-flight, scoped out a landing site and landed safely. It's like the kind of flight choppers have made tens of thousands of times before.
The U.S. military wants to have robotic eyes in the sky constantly roving and watching what goes on below, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They might achieve that capability very soon, as a test vehicle called the Zephyr just obliterated the old endurance record for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), nearly tripling…
An RQ-4 Global Hawk broke the world record for unrefueled flight endurance by a full-scale uncrewed aircraft in a test at Edwards Air Force Base last week, staying aloft for 33.1 hours at altitudes approaching 60,000 feet. The Northrop-Grumman built plane costs $28 million each - there are currently three of them in…