Re: Lockheed Mach 5 Penetrator

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Message posted by quellish (Member since 06/26/2008) on August 09, 2023 at 19:27:03 PST:

> Somewhere in the intervening years I did see line art of what it was supposed to look like but can't recall where I saw it or where it was posted and I must not have saved a copy.

The program went through a number of changes over time. In the mid-late 1980s it was QUARTZ, a program of the intelligence community with some service involvement. At that point it looked like a much bigger X-56.
They lost an aircraft due to flutter - which is why they repurposed the configuration in the BFF and X-56 to research flutter.

Around 1988-89 there was a consolidation of programs and DoD was brought in to provide more management and funding. Lockheed was forced to partner with Boeing and the aircraft was redesigned to look more like a large P-175 Polecat.

The program was cancelled in 1992-93 due to cost and technical risk. Each aircraft was very expensive and they did not expect to produce many of them at this point, but over the previous 10 years or so they had promised it as the solution to every problem of every service. Locating mobile missiles for the B-2 to strike? Sure! Tactical surveillance with a JSTARS radar? Why not! Replace the U-2, Aquilla, RC-12, and everything else? Of course!

They would not have been able to make good on any of those promises.

In Reply to: Re: Lockheed Mach 5 Penetrator posted by Pod on August 09, 2023 at 9:06:51 PST:


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