ONE OF OUR DRONES IS MISSING
A "stealth" drone that has crashed in Iran is an RQ-170 Sentinel. Dubbed the 'Beast of Kandahar' after being pictured flying in Afghanistan, little is known about the drone, although it is believed to have radar-evading capability. It is understood the drone was on a surveillance mission inside Iran.
The RQ-170 design lacks several elements common to stealth engineering, namely notched landing-gear doors and sharp leading edges. It has a curved wing, and the exhaust is not shielded by the wing. It has been postulated that these missing elements suggest the designers have avoided highly sensitive technologies due to the near certainty of eventual operational loss inherent with a single-engine design and a desire to avoid the risk of compromising leading-edge technology.
Made of 90% composite materials to help it evade radar.
Powered by General Electric TF-34 turbofan engine.
"Bumps" believed to contain satellite communication antennas. Could also be used to house missile payloads.
Camera under the nose.
Radar and signal sensors are carried in the belly.
Vehicle Type: Unmanned aerial vehicle
Manufacturer: Lockheed Martin
Primary user: United States Air Force
Number built: 251
Unit cost: US$6,000,000
Wingspan: 20 metres
Max. takeoff weight: 3,850 kg
Max. altitude: 15,250 metres
Weapons: None known
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