Probable issues during ground tests and early flight tests of "RQ-180"

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Message posted by Vahe Demirjian (Member since 04/28/2022) on July 09, 2024 at 14:57:27 PST:

According to a November 2020 message to Steve Trimble, a number of problems were encountered with the "RQ-180" during its ground and flight tests. I've not been able to access the article, but instances of flight control software for this unmanned P-ISR UAV encountering problems during ground testing may suggest that Northrop Grumman and US Air Force personnel probably made minor fixes to glitches in the flight control software for the "RQ-180" before the first flight and subsequent flight tests of the "RQ-180".

It's been obvious from confidential sources that one of the "RQ-180" EMD vehicles was lost in an accident in December 2016, although Northrop Grumman was undeterred by this crash as it gradually undertook production of the "RQ-180". Since the "RQ-180" and B-21 share the same wing planform, reported flight software glitches and other issues could be another reason the USAF has kept the drone under wraps for years to prevent such issues from repeating themselves on the B-21 Raider prior to ground and flight testing, since it views the "RQ-180" as its newest aerial P-ISR asset.

Attached link: The Debrief: Federal Charges Revive 'RQ-180' Claims By Ex-USAF Engineer


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