Peter Merlin: With thanks

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Message posted by Smythers (Member since 01/10/2010) on February 15, 2023 at 7:24:26 PST:

Esteemed member (here on DLR) Mr Peter Merlin said to me the other week that 'sometimes a cloak is just a cloak' in reference to the image within the B-21 Raider patch I linked (It is also to the left of the linked image). I didn't argue at this, but I knew that the cloak rang a bell. I'd seen it before, that wiggly line & kinked twist. Took me a while to ponder it, went through all my work, but yes, I had remembered correctly.

In short? My theory is that the entire wing is active - as in full blown surfaces, adaptive wingtips & morphing rear to create a wing that can, and does, adapt to create a near perfect geometry for high altitude loitering, coupled with a micron level roughness to create laminar flow in places where it is traditionally impossible. Looking at the hi res images again, I am now near certain that the B-21 raider is using the RQ-180's ability to shed heat (bakes into the ceramic RAM) on the upper surfaces. My offering is in the linked image below.

The cloak as a wing was clever. The cloak as the aerodynamics behind the said wing? Was a brilliant play. Simply brilliant. The patch showing the heat distribution and shedding, as well as strength of the blown flow? Bravo.

Sometimes a cloak is just a cloak. But not this time. No, not this one. This one had real meaning. In my opinion of course.

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