Yesterday I began a short series of articles about hidden systems of finance, security comparmentalization, cost-plus financing, and recent "things" I've looked into on the internet, including the emerging collateralization of space, asteroid mining, and extra-terrestrial mineral rights and, in a more recent "meme," extraterrestrial property rights. You'll recall that over recent blogs and News and Views I've also been talking about spaceports, and in particular, the Burns Flat, Oklahoma "spaceport," a left-over US Air Force B-52 base with an enormously long 13,500' runway. Finally, I ended yesterday's blog on with the question, what happens when items show up in proposed budgets that shouldn't?
The item I am referring to is the so-called Aurora aircraft, the alleged successor to the SR71 "Blackbird" reconnaissance aircraft, which in its turn was the successor to the U-2. The first mention of the name "Aurora" in a US Defense Department document occurred in 1985, in a procurement document (i.e., Pentagram "wish list")dated February 4, 1985. In this document, $80,000,000 is requested for 1986, and that figure jumps to an enormous $2,200,000,000 for 1987!(See Mystery Aircraft: Aurora).
While there is little evidence for such an aircraft, what evidence there is is highly suggestive. Speculations abound that the triangular delta-shaped craft is propelled by a pulse-ramjet, or a combination propulsion system consisting of a normal turbojet for takeoffs and landings, a pulse ramjet for actual atmospheric cruising, and a rocket for orbital exo-atmospheric flight. Some of the evidence mentioned in the previous article are curious sonic booms over the southern California high desert, and overheard military radio transmissions:
"On Apr. 5 (a Sunday) and Apr. 22, radio hobbyists in Southern California monitored transmissions between Edwards AFB's radar control facility (Joshua Control) and a high-altitude aircraft using the call sign "Gaspipe." The series of radio calls occurred at approximately 6 a.m. local time on both dates.
"Controllers were directing the unknown Gaspipe aircraft to a runway at Edwards, using advisories similar to those given space shuttle crews during a landing approach. The monitors recorded two advisories, both transmitted by Joshua Control to Gaspipe: "You're at 67,000, 81 mi. out," and "Seventy mi. out, 36,000. Above glide slope."(Mystery Aircraft: Aurora)
As mentioned above, the alleged propulsion system at cruising altitudes would be a pulsed ramjet, and there are numerous photos of something flying in American skies that leaves a contrail signature commensurate with such a system:
Now why am I bothering you with an aircraft/space-plane that may or may not exist? First, because clearly something is flying in the sky at enormous speeds leaving an unusual contrail. Notably, the pulse-ramjet was one of the proposals for a high-altitude "space plane" of Nazi scientist Ronald Richter (see my Nazi International). Such a craft would require, by the nature of the case, long runways... such as exist at California's Edwards Air Force base, the now famous runway at Area 51, and...well, the Burns Flat, Oklahoma space port. You'll note that in the article linked above, there is also mention of a McDonnell-Douglas study, dating from 1985, for a commercial aircraft:
"In 1985 McDonnell Douglas conducted studies of a Mach 5, 12,000 km range 305 passenger HSCT (hypersonic commercial transport) powered by regenerative ATR (air turboramjet) engines. Initial research led to claims that this type of aircraft was not only feasible, but remarkably efficient. According to these studies, a ramjet was the best option at Mach 5, and that methane was the preferred fuel. Hydrogen was also considered, but it takes up to five times as much space. If the large HSCT was scaled down to the dimensions of an SR-71, the aircraft could have a range of approximately 10,000 miles with a crew of two and a 1 ton sensor suite."(Ibid)
In other words, the studies, and the technology, was there, and only the money was lacking...
...or was it? Clearly money was spent on something, and it's very high altitude, and very fast. And very unusual.
So again, why bother with all this?
For one simple reason: whatever the Aurora study represents - and the article mentions that some believe it to be a "multi-purpose" platform with multiple missions, not just high altitude reconnaissance - it represents the product of normal cost-plus financing, and normal black budget, as evidenced by its mention in the 1986 USAF procurement "wish list." In other words, we are not even yet at the deepest level of financing, nor at the deepest level of black technology.
But are are looking at a technology, and one that would require...long runways...in the middle of nowhere...
There's one more consideration I want to address, but that will have to wait until tomorrow...
...See you on the flip side.