Lost at sea. Military loses contact with hypersonic test plane
August 11th, 2011
08:17 AM ET

Lost at sea. Military loses contact with hypersonic test plane

By Adam Levine

Military researchers conducting the flight of the fastest unmanned aircraft ever launched said Thursday an "anomaly" caused a lost contact with the vehicle nine minutes into its flight. The plane is believed to have crashed in the Pacific at some point along the planned flight path, according to a statement from the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA), which conducted the test.

The Falcon Hypersonic Test Vehicle (HTV-2) had successfully separated from the launch vehicle and was performing "glide phase" maneuvers meant to test its aerodynamics when contact was lost, according to an 11 a.m. (ET) Twitter post from DARPA. A tweet, at 12:30 p.m. said downrange trackers were unable to relocate the HTV2 but the vehicle "has an autonomous flight termination capability".

The vehicle was launched by a Minotaur IV rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, before separating and re-entering the atmosphere over the Pacific. The launch, originally slated for Wednesday but then scrubbed because of weather, was not broadcast live.

This was the second run for the craft. In April 2010 ended with the aircraft crashing into the Pacific after a loss of contact nine minutes into the flight. But those nine minutes provided some key information about flying 22 times faster than a commercial jetliner.

Thursday's flight was to test control and communications capabilities, as well as heat resistance and other effects of hypersonic flight. The nine minutes of data demonstrated that launching the aircraft was mastered but they continued to be stymied in controlling the vehicle at Mach 20 speed.

"We do not yet know how to achieve the desired control during the aerodynamic phase of flight. It’s vexing; I’m confident there is a solution. We have to find it," said Air Force Maj. Chris Schulz, the DARPA program manager.

DARPA's goal is to create the capability of reaching any target in the world in less than an hour.

The triangular wedge of zoom is capable of reaching Mach 20 – approximately 13,000 miles per hour – according to DARPA. At such speeds in Earth's atmosphere, friction subjects the vehicle to temperatures of more than 3,500 degrees Fahrenheit.

As DARPA said on the HTV-2 site, at that speed "air doesn't travel around you – you rip it apart."

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a0NBMPMfQ8I&w=425&h=349%5D

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Filed under: DARPA • Military
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    • Mark

      I agree! (huh?)

      August 30, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Reply
  10. Teresa

    @marine in afghanistan: Well spoken sir! Please come back safe and sound.

    August 17, 2011 at 7:27 am | Reply
  11. Ebere

    Not true at all. Humanity has always had tech and war gadgets – fashioned out of wood or metal or stone. Read your history again, then pay attention specifically to the Babylonians, the Persians, the Greeks, the Romans, and the Chinese.

    August 17, 2011 at 6:30 am | Reply
  12. Ebere

    Nice one there. People will always give excuses why good advances shouldnt be made, while ignorantly using technologies that they would have criticised if they were alive when they were built. I think pessimists (retrogressers and status quo guys) are too many for the good of mankind, and we really need to build a machine with which to tweak and tinker with their mind sets. I need a pessimist to criticise what I just said.

    August 13, 2011 at 7:40 am | Reply
    • Teresa

      Well, you won't get me to disagree. We live in the most amazing world ever. To denigrate it because we are still trying to solve the problems is to negate the historical and anthropological process is sheer ignorance.

      August 17, 2011 at 7:30 am | Reply
  13. The Flavored Coffee Guy

    The problem is simple. Re-entry caused these kinds of problems before and that was the Moon Missions back in the late 60s and early 70s. Plasma coats craft and cuts off communications. If you use the old math and old school methods on a craft travelling allot faster, you wind up loosing your signal anyway. The hotter the plasma, the better a short circuit if makes for radio waves. The more aerodynamic the design of the craft, the more even the sheet of plasma. So, it probably left several bands of radar and couldn't be followed by a list of frequencies, and included in that was the communications channels. There is a way to look signal analysis vs imaging to detect via spectrometer or color analysis about what temperature the skin of the craft was, altitude and pressure to calculate actual plasma temperatures. You could set up all wrong again, not one electronic component will fail and as long as that plasma comes back, so does the loss of contact.

    August 13, 2011 at 1:20 am | Reply
  14. arseve

    I am a citizen of the world. doesn't matter what country i come from but the U.S. is the most trusted country that can carry out advanced weapons development without being "perceived" to have the the intention to use these weapons to dominate the world. our species cannot survive without making these advances, these weapons will soon be used commercially for us humans to propagate across the solar system and beyond. the knowledge we get out of a very small TAX dollar americans use to fund this program is nothing compared to the value of what the new technology might come out of this 20x speed of sound hypersonic craft.

    Economics considered, it is money well spent rather than putting food on tables on people who have nothing to contribute to humanity's future is a waste. let us remember there is so much waste in the world that does not contribute to the survival of our species and future generation, the field of medicine, robotics, artificial intelligence that will someday make our life more meaningful rather than just fund starving people whose lives are a direct consequence of our ignorance of the universe we live in.

    Let us move forward and encourage all scientific, military and political advancements that will create a balanced, harmonious and peaceful planet that will someday colonize the universe.

    August 12, 2011 at 9:16 pm | Reply
    • Mike

      Humanity survived this long without all that tech. I think were fine.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:10 pm | Reply
      • Teresa

        We did? Sure if you ignore the countless people who died painful, early deaths due to childbirth, influenza, measles, .diptheria, etc., and the random slaughter of marauding thugs (mongols, goths, vandals, nazis, etc – yes, yes! Our ancestors, lol.). I like the idea that my grandchildren may live until they're 150 due to the concerted effort of scientists and medical researchers around the world. Misery still exists, but to suggest that technology hasn't assuaged it is ludicrous.

        August 17, 2011 at 7:40 am |
    • bigguntry

      ok sir just an fyi world peace has never nor will it ever happen and if you want to talk about economics it has been proven that wars improve the economic situation so you can blame all the problems of the world on bush, or obama, or war or what ever you like i really dont care but please do us a favor and shut up...
      respectfully a marine in afghanistan

      August 17, 2011 at 2:18 am | Reply
      • bfitz

        Semper Fi, Marine!

        August 17, 2011 at 10:35 am |
      • aratta

        ok sir just an fyi world peace has never nor will it ever happen. FYI, it will not happen in your life time. 1000 years from now they will look back and not believe how we killed each other. Religion will be instainct by then so peace will have a chance.

        September 7, 2011 at 4:41 pm |
      • Go Go Go

        Aratta what the hell is "instainct". Maybe one of these should crash into you living space. So we can fund them better then wasteing money to send you to school/

        September 7, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
      • Go Go Go

        Also Aratta. As long as there is humans on this world. There will be fear of a higher power.

        September 7, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  15. Ebere

    Sophos: Beal said TECHNOLOGY and MILITARY ADVANCE drive civilisation, not WARS like u accuse him of saying. At the end of his post, he even narrowed everything down to science as the future (whether pioneered by the military dept or not, i believe he might have added). But then, he's right! Read about the GPS and other military advances that have improved the field of medicine, communication, etc and ultimately made ur life as a civilian more comfortable. Hell, even some of d best academic institutions in your country are military-owned. The fast-craft which is the point of discussion will actually also have its applications in civilian transport (so long as it overcomes the reasons why the operation of an earlier fast-craft, The Concorde, was ended). U are lucky u belong to a country with an innovative military. Mine are lazy. I had to reply cos I didnt like that u took Beals comment for what he didnt say.

    August 12, 2011 at 7:22 pm | Reply
    • Reg

      So now you know why projects like this can't be kept secet. The taxpayers require accountability. However, there's always the upside to tech demonstrations, in the sense that it strikes wisdom into potential enemies, that war is not a good idea, for there's hell to pay if the do start one. Besides this test has been declared as failure of sorts, so there's always deniability, and yet possibility. No sane enemy would want to take the chance to find out.

      August 12, 2011 at 8:31 pm | Reply
    • Arturo Bandini

      The work "you" is spelled "you,", not "u." Save it for texting, not for adult communication.

      August 12, 2011 at 9:18 pm | Reply
      • CGB Spender

        Arturo Bandini wrote.
        The work "you" is spelled "you,", not "u." Save it for texting, not for adult communication.

        Sorry Arturo Bandini but the word I think you were looking for was "word" not "work".

        August 12, 2011 at 9:28 pm |
      • Mike

        Or you can just look past it if you don't like how he types the "work".

        August 16, 2011 at 10:12 pm |
  16. ThinkItThru

    So...you'd like the US to fall behind in space exploration/air vehicles so that other countries can get there before we do? It takes years to catch up once you've fallen behind, and a lot of bad stuff can happen in years. I'm ALL for the space program and being #1 in space technology. I don't want to give any other "friendly" (now!) country the opportunity to dominate us down the road in this technology.

    August 12, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Reply
  17. beal

    why are there so many people against this? technology and military advances are what drive human civilization towards our current standards of prosperity, and i am more than happy to contribute my tax dollars- if people are complaining about job loss, how about invest into science? at least science has a future- not this economy

    August 12, 2011 at 4:19 pm | Reply
    • GV

      + $1 Trillion deficit. That's why so many people are against this. If you don't have enough money to pay your bills you have to make cuts. Superflous military spending like this, seems to be a pretty obvious place to make those cuts

      August 12, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Reply
      • Maty

        Bettering ourselves through the sciences involved in spaceflight is crucial to our economy, industrial, and well, it's a matter of national pride, too. The intangibles and applied technologies derived from this kind of 'intellectual dreaming' are worth every damn penny.

        August 12, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • Sophos

      That is quite a load...the military advances civilization? People recover from the efforts of war, not advance. Nothing good has come from any American military efforts. WWII vets have something to crow about, in part....but all the rest... a huge waste of life. What the US did in Iraq was uncivilized and destroyed a civil society. Your logic makes no sense.

      August 12, 2011 at 6:52 pm | Reply
      • Baum

        Iraq's civilized society? Would you have liked to have been a Kurd in Iraq?


        August 13, 2011 at 6:46 pm |
      • Just me

        On the contrary. Many many advances have come from militaries and wars around the world. Take for example the entire trauma care system in the US. It is based of experience gained through conflicts in which the US has been involved. Mostly from Vietnam through Iraq and Afgahanistan. It is because of the military we have GPS. It is because of the military we have a lot of computer tech. It is because of the military that many police departments are starting to look into less than lethal weapon systems. And let's not forget it is because of the military that you still have the freezing of speech to make such idiotic, s***thead comments.

        August 13, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
      • Lucidz

        You do realize DARPA invented the internet, which you're now using to whine with?

        August 14, 2012 at 11:06 am |
    • Mike

      Our country can barely make time to pass laws we don't need something that fast. It a mistake in the happening, a trillion some odd dollar mistake.

      August 16, 2011 at 10:15 pm | Reply
  18. michael

    On vacation in Vieques Puerto rico, Did a bio bay tour last night around 8pm island time saw an object in space thought it was a star at first then started moving so i then thought it may be a satelite but then it started slightly straffing, in all lasted about 1 min and dissapeared all on the tour got an extra special light show.

    August 12, 2011 at 4:13 pm | Reply
  19. CPW

    It looks like a star destroyer.

    August 12, 2011 at 2:25 pm | Reply
  20. Will

    Don't worry. It only cost a few dollars to do the whole thing, I'm sure. So us taxpayers won't lose out.

    August 12, 2011 at 2:21 pm | Reply
    • Reg

      Closed-circuit money flows. Pretty cool. Ofcourse much of the work had been outsourced to European and Asian number crunchers. Don't worry those were probably under-paid and un-recognised.

      August 12, 2011 at 2:29 pm | Reply
      • Will

        Thanks for pointing that out. Now I will be able to sleep tonight.

        August 12, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
  21. Jim Morrison

    This will be great! As long as where ever it's sent is within the nine minute range...Great job old boy!! Tremendously done old chap...NOW GIVE ME MY MONEY BACK MORONS!!

    August 12, 2011 at 2:18 pm | Reply
  22. Dark Ninja Lord

    This thing didn't just get lost. Someone pushed the Hyperspace button and it reappeared in the Alderon system, near the planet Dantue.

    August 12, 2011 at 2:08 pm | Reply
  23. Teresa

    Speaking of alternate re-entry strategies, Virgin Galactic recently unveiled the following: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lqhzlq7UReA so cool!

    August 12, 2011 at 1:43 pm | Reply
  24. AZ

    Why are we still building weapons that destroy in masses ? I thought our technology was far better than that by now!?
    Lasers, pulse weapons, micro waves, assassin drones *these are cool actually*, cyber attacks, and the list of sci-fi sounding stuff that is actually out there goes on.... always a good thing to have a solid defense, but people's money is not being managed properly here. if citizens of US looked at their tax money and the way its being spent like an investor watching his stocks and shares in a company, we would see a much different America... my two cents 🙂

    August 12, 2011 at 12:55 pm | Reply
    • Reg

      Maybe you didn't know the background of this. Despite appearance, this is not meant as a weapon of mass destruction. It's a precision weapon that aims to bring down an enemy target ASAP, without nuclear warhead. In fact it destroys the target through either a conventional explosive, or sheer kinetic impact.

      August 12, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Reply
      • AZ

        Then we have another very cool item added to the list.

        August 12, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
      • Ebere

        Right on, Reg. I'm not American, but then u Americans have a freedom u have to protect (the cost of projects like DARPA is far less than the cost of loosing ur freedoms). Stop developing these sort of equipment and you'll see ur country overrun by people who have no other wish but to see America fall. I have had my qualms with America, especially when being mishandled by some of ur leaders. However, truth be said: America needs these military advantages for there to be a measure of restraint from the violent quarters.

        However, I thought there was an advantege in keeping the development of gadgets like these secret.

        August 12, 2011 at 5:56 pm |
      • Reg

        Yes, it's cool. However let's not forget that it's easy to convert this into a nuke, although that was not the real rationale for this project.

        August 12, 2011 at 8:13 pm |
      • Mike

        Ebere, usually "future tech" like this is years ahead of what actually fielded anyway. It was like that with the SR-71.

        August 16, 2011 at 10:18 pm |
      • Mike

        *years behind

        August 16, 2011 at 10:19 pm |
  25. Rastko Zlatic

    Ask the U. K. They know something about it.Tthey fly London to Sydney in 2 hours.SORY!?!?!?

    August 12, 2011 at 11:57 am | Reply
    • Reg

      If you're talking about the Concorde it's long been retired. Moreover that thing only went Mach 2.04. We're talking Hypersonic vehicles here. The minimum speed is Mach 5 to qualify, and any scientist with half a wit knows upon re-entry that shoots upto Mach 20. IN the world there are only a few nations that have succesfully shown (powered) Hypersonic flight and any related scramjet technology: US, Russia, India, Australia. The others are still on theoretical phases. Besides I think that this US test has been hugely succesful. The lost bit in the end is not a deal-breaker, in fact it's very common for missiles to lose telemetry in the end, hence the autonomous flight controllers.

      August 12, 2011 at 12:26 pm | Reply
  26. Art

    When we build radar jamming and stealth planes, somehow someone always spots them through either improved technology or just plain "shot" it down....

    Now that we are building a plane with all the technology to go subsonic and "to be seen" by our radars – we can't find it.

    Sigh............Billions of dollars spent on something that always work backwards

    August 12, 2011 at 10:53 am | Reply
    • Fact

      Not so. The purpose of this missile is not to be seen. In fact the enemy will never see it coming since it doesn't follow a predictable ballistic trajectory, but an arbitrary/controllable flight path much like a cruise missile. Hence, it means US doesn't need to fear a second strike, since nobody can back trace it using parabolic trigonometry, especially since it is also going to be well outside radar, if not too fast to be targeted/acquired.

      August 12, 2011 at 11:07 am | Reply
  27. Nico NL

    The project began in 2003 and cost $320 million, Eric Mazzacone, a spokesman for Darpa, said

    August 12, 2011 at 9:06 am | Reply
    • Truth pointer

      I'd say it's at least 60% successful. The remaining 40% can be gotten thru a third test. Like most of these advanced projects, it's more a strain on material resources than brains. The difference between, say US and another country developing this, is not the technology or intellect, but the economic backing.

      August 12, 2011 at 9:15 am | Reply
  28. Reg

    Just google "Avatar Missile India" and see another hypersonic missile program that's been running for over a decade. The technology was already proven, bu then disappear into hush-hush radio-silence mode, which is typical of hi-tech weapons development programs.

    August 12, 2011 at 8:35 am | Reply
    • Richard

      The 'Aerobic Vehicle for hypersonic Aerospace TrAnpoRtation' (AVATAR) is a hyperplane concept from India. Besides defense, it's designed to be actually useful also for civilian applications.

      August 12, 2011 at 8:39 am | Reply
  29. Koe

    Does anyone remember the craft from the begging of the original planet of the apes? This look exactly like it.

    August 12, 2011 at 7:52 am | Reply
    • Reg

      Most warhead look exactly like it, in every country that possesses nuclear ballistic missile warheads. This one's been flattened a bit to have wings so it can glide. Basically a flattened cone. Nothing new, just the same old re-entry technology.

      August 12, 2011 at 8:18 am | Reply
  30. Tad Pole

    "..is capable of reaching speeds up to mach 20.." – in theory. How much is being spent on this because it *might be possible, and would have military applications*, while in the meantime we are being downgraded because there isn't enough money? We are really going to let older citizens of these United States perhaps forego needed medical care, or suffer the cruel realities of not being able to meet basic care needs, so that projects like the one mentioned in this article can be funded further? Granted, it is definately an interesting and ground-breaking scientific endvour, but at what cost?

    August 12, 2011 at 7:35 am | Reply
    • Mightyfoul

      I agree.

      August 12, 2011 at 8:32 am | Reply
    • Bakamjakafoo

      Ground breaking scientific endeavors are what create new industries which provide jobs. Science and R&D are not where cuts need to be made. There are plenty of other pork projects and wasteful spending that can be cut including the salaries and spending allowances of just about everyone in our government.

      August 12, 2011 at 8:51 am | Reply
      • Jason

        Thank you for showing common sense! NASA and science related funding are the last places that should get cuts to their budgets.

        August 12, 2011 at 9:01 am |
    • somalia

      oh, well, you're worried about the downgrade or, the citizens from the USA, how about children dying in somalia

      August 12, 2011 at 9:00 am | Reply
      • Americann

        oh you mean the ones who killed our soldiers years ago? let them starve.

        August 12, 2011 at 9:44 am |
    • i cant believe is not butter

      Better yet!...how much money is it going to be spent fueling this sonnnn off a bbiatch........it takes 150,000 to fuel a f150........dam !!! All that money could of save a lot of people in africa

      August 12, 2011 at 11:52 am | Reply
      • Andre

        Or it could further science. Much better idea.

        August 13, 2011 at 7:11 am |
  31. disney

    its flight of the navigator!!! He returned!!!

    August 12, 2011 at 6:57 am | Reply
    • jman

      lol that totally looks like the ship from Flight of the Navigator. wtf

      August 12, 2011 at 7:45 am | Reply
    • dr


      August 12, 2011 at 10:34 am | Reply
  32. Casper

    Anyone seen our plane ? Sure it got caught in the Chinese dragnet and is already being reverse-engineered and improved.

    August 12, 2011 at 6:56 am | Reply
    • Hanksterthebankster

      ....ain't THAT the truty!!!

      August 12, 2011 at 9:27 am | Reply
  33. hitler

    What is the need for such an ability? I have a suggestion. This plane can transport a small specialised crew to any world location within an hour. What for? Consider terrorists using small nuclear bombs. They could put them anywhere on this planet. This plane can get a crew to that location in the hope of destroying the nuclear device. That is my theory. What do you think?

    August 12, 2011 at 6:41 am | Reply
    • Tad Pole

      The vehicle is too small for any type of human life support functions. I doubt it is to put people somwhere. Bombs, perhaps. The advantage strategically of being able to hit a target within minutes is large. That being said, anything traveling that fast would have huge destructional capabilities even without a warhead of any kind. I guess this would also bypass all those rules about what technically defines a long range missle, because it may not have any explosives on board. To me it all seems like a theoretically plausible idea that costs a lot of money at the expense of those people that really NEED help now.

      August 12, 2011 at 7:39 am | Reply
    • i cant believe is not butter

      If you destroy the device ,it still blows up nummmmm nuttttssss!!!

      August 12, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Reply
    • H. B.

      One small, teensy-weensy problem with your idea. Anyone on board when it exceeds a given maximum G's will arrive in the form of applesauce. I don't know, since I'm no scientist, precisely what that maximum is, but mach 20 is surely far above it. Nor is it likely a vehicle of that nature could contain people without reducing its capabilities tremendously. The mere addition of the needed size and weight capacity would slow it down considerably. The virtue of a vehicle such as this lies in its sheer speed – which precludes endangering humans to operate it, too.

      It really helps if you obtain a modicum of scientific knowledge before bleating forth with impossible notions. You don't have to become a scientist yourself, but without SOME knowledge of G forces, you're not qualified to express this opinion.

      August 12, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Reply
  34. Wasted1

    I'm kind of hot-natured. Seems a bit toasty for me. But loaded with explosives, it could be quite a Predator. Let's try it in North Korea!

    August 12, 2011 at 6:32 am | Reply
  35. rangelso

    I think that's a wrong approach to future flying. Who with a sound mind would get locked in a windowless capsule and then fired into the space hoping to survive an hour or so 3G rollercoaster ride even if it manages to reach its destination ? And the chances of it crashing at Mach20 is 1000 times more than of regular jet.
    So the idea is to build lightweight – large wing space glider that could be locally elevated to lets say altitude of 100 km over the airport, and then dropped for a free fall flight where it may accelerate and gradualy proceed to its destination at subsonic speeds. The only problem though is to elevate the aircraft to such altitude. This could be done either traditionally with use of stratospheric balloons or more sophisticately with a geostationary satellite located over the runway reflecting or emiting high power focused electromagnetic or laser beam used as a transport rail to the aircraft.

    August 12, 2011 at 6:19 am | Reply
    • adam

      well virtually every pre-shuttle astronaut sat in a supersonic capsule. It's doable. As far as your inference to its practicality... it is a fledgling technology. If you saw the first car being tested you wouldn't criticize it for not being able to break 200 mph on a grand prix track.

      August 12, 2011 at 6:35 am | Reply
    • Not important

      Yeah who indeed... well how about no one? This is the future of flight it is unmanned and remote or fully computer controlled. At these speeds what would be the point of sticking in a human, it is not like at 20x the speed of sound a human would have the capability to press the release button on time for the bomb to hit it's target. Nor will a human be able to make evasive maneuvers without pulling so many G forces that they simply die instantly.

      Humans are to slow and to error prone to control pretty much any moving object going faster then a couple of times the speed of sound, 20x the speed of sound none of us would be able to survive (9+ will end up killing pretty much any human)

      August 12, 2011 at 6:53 am | Reply
      • Aimes

        This talk of high-g's killing us weedy humans is all well and good, but I have to point out that g-force is a measure of acceleration whereas Mach is a unit for speed. I haven't calculated any numbers but any movements made by this glider are small (otherwise it will go wildly off course/disintegrate) and so I don't know what G's would be pulled during these manoeuvres. Anything greater than 10G will kill a pilot, but they would have to be pretty extreme manoeuvres. Anyways, my point is lets not get these two (very different) things confused

        August 16, 2011 at 6:37 am |
  36. southern_gent_from_mississippi

    Sorry if I lost my train of thought a couple times above and Im sure there are also spelling and grammar errors but please understand that I was educated in Mississippi. Proud of my state but disgusted at the republican 'leaders' that keep us LAST in the nation for basically everything.

    August 12, 2011 at 6:15 am | Reply
  37. southern_gent_from_mississippi

    1st, darpa contributes nothing to our economy, it TAKES away from it. It spends our tax dollars on worthless technology that for the most will NEVER be passed on for civilian use. Most of their work will remain classified which puts it off limits for us. 2nd, weve had supersonic aircraft before. Nothing that travels 13,000 miles an hour but, we still dont have that that. 2 launches in 2 years and 2 crashes into the ocean. Great work wasting our tax dollars. And for those who dont remember, our previous supersonic civilian aircraft were to expensive to travel in that only the rich ever boarded one. 3rd, we dont need more rediculous military weapons. We need properly trained and dedicated troops with true leaders of which we have none. Weve been firing salvos of cruise missiles to the middle east at $2million a pop for over a decade now and guess what, the locals with their $5dollar pipe bombs are still beating us. Technology will NEVER win wars for us. As a country, we need to come to terms with that fact and get some leadership to take our military back to the basics. Think about it. We havent won a war in over 60 years but we still keep attacking smaller less developed nations. We terrorize nations we dont like, libya for example, with constant bombing and missile attacks and at the same time allow our friend nations to murder their citizens on a daily nation, syria for example. Is there any doubt why the rest of the world has come to hate us with a vengeance?

    August 12, 2011 at 5:55 am | Reply
    • Jeff

      With attitudes like yours we would still be living in caves and dying before 38...the only thing that makes life living is innovation!! You must be one of those people that expect a handout from the government at every turn, I am thankful that my hard earned tax dollars goes to something productive. So my children can benefit from our successes and our failures!!

      August 12, 2011 at 6:13 am | Reply
      • Tad Pole

        I guess it all depends on how you define productivity. I would rather see it spent on making a diaper that would allow me to not have to sit in my own feeces when I get older.

        August 12, 2011 at 7:42 am |
      • hdrider

        right on jeff

        August 12, 2011 at 9:14 am |
    • jcm52

      Um, Darpa led to the creation of the internet...

      August 12, 2011 at 6:14 am | Reply
      • Mr. Farady

        ^-- speak

        August 12, 2011 at 6:23 am |
    • adam

      darpa deals in fledgling technologies that may or may not reach its intended purpose in society. the entire purpose for the existence of darpa is to promote both governmental and private sector advances into what would otherwise seem improbably or impossible, if it had to focus on its short term financial viability, we would still be flying propeller planes.

      August 12, 2011 at 6:23 am | Reply
      • Tad Pole

        DARPA primarily promotes military projects with tax dollars so that progress can be made in those areas by guiding money specifically towards projects that are deemed to be beenficial to the US military in some way.

        August 12, 2011 at 7:44 am |
    • adam

      ALSO, technology does win wars. I don't know what battlefield you're thinking of, but the guy with the biggest guns, best trained soldiers, most accurate bombs and fastest jets usually wins. You talk about taking our military back to the basics, well a military can never be basic to be effective on a technology ridden modern battlefield, sorry. We aren't switzerland, we actually need to kill people in our wars. ALSO, maybe it's just me, but no where in there did it even suggest that the HTV program was militant in any way.

      August 12, 2011 at 6:29 am | Reply
      • Tad Pole

        I would argue that technology wins battles, but I don't think it wins wars. Vietnam and Afghanistan are classic examples.

        August 12, 2011 at 7:45 am |
      • Doug

        sure, like Vietnam

        August 12, 2011 at 8:23 am |
    • DLR

      Did you seriously just ask what technology DARPA has ever created that had any civilian application ? THE INTERNET (early version: ARPANET), WHICH IS WHAT YOU ARE USING RIGHT NOW TO CRITICIZE THEM! Moron.

      August 12, 2011 at 8:29 am | Reply
    • Technology_Guy

      Future wars will be fought by robots, with a man pulling the trigger. By air, sea, and ground from anywhere in the world. It means that less soldiers have to die and the technology that comes from it also improves our daily lives.

      August 12, 2011 at 9:46 am | Reply
    • Darpa_lover

      darpa helped create the internet and it was a military project

      August 12, 2011 at 3:29 pm | Reply
  38. UrallDumbFs

    While very smart people are working to build these things. The dumb a@@es of the world hang out and post stupid comments on these web sites.

    August 12, 2011 at 5:51 am | Reply
  39. stewert

    Please don't stop funding for arms research congress, this makes the difference between USA and china being NO 1

    August 12, 2011 at 5:36 am | Reply
    • CelestialOne

      I agree. Keep spending and keep printing. Raise he debt ceiling higher. China is the biggest threat to US. BTW if you need more money you know where to borrow 😉

      August 12, 2011 at 5:59 am | Reply
    • ab

      Except in the last arms race, we outspent Russia until they collapsed. In the arms race with China, we are Russia...

      August 12, 2011 at 8:56 am | Reply
      • Darpa_lover

        umm, yeah, we spend 700 billion a year and china spends 160 billion, but is adding 10 percent each year. How long until they spend as much as US?

        August 12, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • Knowmorethanu

      Just because the plane can fly fast, doesnt have anything to do with how hard a bomb explodes from its payload. If you release a bomb going mach 20, its only gonna fly for so long before falling at its natural terminal velocity. As a military weapon, its useless, as a civilian plane, its useless. How about we use the tax dollars on something more useful? Like finding ways NOT to go to war to stimulate our economies? Or maybe, if all that money isnt wasted on stupid projects like this, we wouldnt have the economy problem to begin with?
      and lastly, WHO GIVES A RATS AZZ IF AMERICA, CHINA, JAPAN, or any other nation is number 1? What is this some sorta highschool retarded mentality?? Stupid americans and their stupid ideas of being number 1 is what is gonna get your country dominated and eliminated. World peace is the only solution, and it starts by STOPPING the production of useless weapons of war and HELPING those who actually need help. Not just the people who have oil on their land.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Reply
  40. stewert

    Go USA
    I LOve U

    August 12, 2011 at 5:34 am | Reply
  41. Eric from kenya.

    Absolutely nonsense.the great scientists we have in the world are from africa.

    August 12, 2011 at 5:00 am | Reply
    • vin

      Are you serious?

      August 12, 2011 at 8:14 am | Reply
  42. reddfrog

    It's caught in a net somewhere in China.

    August 12, 2011 at 12:01 am | Reply
  43. UnInformed

    What is the practicality of this again?

    August 11, 2011 at 11:30 pm | Reply
    • humberto

      Someone made alot of money

      August 12, 2011 at 2:52 am | Reply
    • adam

      darpa doesn't deal in short term practicality. if this program is successful it might be practical in a day-to-day sense 30 years or so after the proving of the technology.

      August 12, 2011 at 6:31 am | Reply
  44. Naomi

    We don't need this hyper-speed stuff. Just watch over Israel for 24 hrs/day. Americans would have been much smarter if their nation is under such constant threat like Israel is.

    August 11, 2011 at 11:15 pm | Reply
    • mcwhiteys

      Always has to be about the Jews doesn't it?

      August 12, 2011 at 2:29 am | Reply
    • Someone

      Why ? It wont be long before Israel crashes into the sea too, although it has cost much more and has been a lot less useful than all the black ops projects put together. Its time Israelis stopped asking the west to pay for their crimes and theft and face their definite doom alone.

      August 12, 2011 at 6:15 am | Reply
  45. vince from elizabeth

    Could they make the next one big enough to hold all the members of congress? PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!

    August 11, 2011 at 6:31 pm | Reply
    • steve

      that cruel, you forgot the senate, got to include them too

      August 11, 2011 at 10:32 pm | Reply
      • Ethan

        He said congress that means both House and Senate.

        August 12, 2011 at 2:55 am |
    • Naomi

      It's American common citizens who are bad. No different from politicians.

      August 11, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Reply
  46. Btechno

    I'm sure it landed in the middle of the South China Sea with a big red bow tied around it.

    August 11, 2011 at 6:26 pm | Reply
    • Corinnian

      Only during the holidays! Papa John's Pizza is planning a huge holiday campaign with this new technology. Move over Santa Claus, here comes Papa Claus ... 30 second pizza or your money back!

      August 11, 2011 at 7:44 pm | Reply
  47. Gerald

    Well, duh! how can they ever contact the aircraft again if it has traveled through time! Now stop bombarding the Mayans darn it!

    August 11, 2011 at 6:23 pm | Reply
  48. rx_81

    Which iPhone App did they use to try to communicate with this?

    August 11, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Reply
  49. Funny

    Nine minutes, lasts longer than most men do. Must have been a women that designed this thing.

    August 11, 2011 at 6:02 pm | Reply
    • Shawn

      Go get a woman for yourself then... FUNNY

      August 11, 2011 at 6:18 pm | Reply
    • Jeff

      Yea, that's why it can't complete the mission.

      August 11, 2011 at 7:16 pm | Reply
      • Mattyc1981

        Well played.

        August 12, 2011 at 6:36 am |
    • qin


      August 12, 2011 at 9:46 am | Reply
      • Darpa_lover


        August 12, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
  50. gary wilson

    USA is deep in debt .. US schools crumble ... and the mad military machine grinds up our money. How do we stop it??

    August 11, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Reply
    • John

      Vote Democrat.

      August 11, 2011 at 6:05 pm | Reply
      • Bobo

        You are a moron.

        August 11, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
      • ric flair

        Vote Jesse The Body Ventura

        August 11, 2011 at 6:45 pm |
    • John Eric Hopkinson

      Easy now you guys. I was impressed with the elevated level of commentary on this subject, which is a welcome relief to the moronic postings elesewhere.
      Most of the posters here seemto be familiar with the machinations of the bureaucracy and with the vicissitudes of scientific endeavor. Stay cool and remember that the construction of schools and the support of science and engineering depend entirely on your objectives, which are also the reasons that you need both of those.
      You need both of those to sail the Atlantic, as did Columbus, to scream wildly over the Pacific, as this strange craft has done, and to wander around Mars, as Opportunity is doing right now.
      Without pride in your achievements, America, you will achieve nothing.
      shape up.

      August 11, 2011 at 6:30 pm | Reply
  51. CA Pat

    I learned that this is supposed to help us stop aggression aimed at the US. Good luck on that!

    Couldn't we take care of things in the US that are of great need with all of that money. We still have people that are hurting from Hurricane Katrina. The US just left them hanging. That money could go a long way in helping others. Let's help many that are sick, starving, and lost everything to natural disasters!

    The Libertarians might have the right idea. Start letting the states run for themselves. We pay the legislators in Washington, DC way toooooooooooo much money! Cut out a ton of them and we might get a balanced budget one day along with budgeting our money on worthwhile things!

    August 11, 2011 at 5:56 pm | Reply
    • gary wilson

      defense contractors buy congress, congress gives pork barrel contracts to defense contractors, ... USA schools go without supplies. Dog Bless America

      August 11, 2011 at 6:01 pm | Reply
      • Manuel

        Gary you only got it half right....25 cents an hour is what there After ! Then Soilent Green

        August 12, 2011 at 12:04 am |
    • Jaques

      No WAY!!! The Taliban as of late has been moving at 40x the speed of light on their camels...of course we need this technology!!

      August 11, 2011 at 6:02 pm | Reply
      • Manuel

        Jaques are we talking about the Republicans Telaban- Oh Wemans Rights !

        August 12, 2011 at 12:09 am |
    • reACTIONary

      You have got to be kidding. We pay the politicians in Washington peanuts. Not anywhere near what even a early carrer CEO gets. Tax dollars mainly go to medicare. In other words, we are spending our money on ourselves.

      August 11, 2011 at 6:18 pm | Reply
  52. RachelM

    And how much did this cost us tax payers?

    August 11, 2011 at 5:52 pm | Reply
    • gary wilson


      August 11, 2011 at 5:58 pm | Reply
    • seriously226


      August 11, 2011 at 5:58 pm | Reply
    • reACTIONary

      Peanuts. DARPA is the organization that brought you the Internet... so you can more effectively complain about DARPA.

      August 11, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Reply
  53. Stephan Wilkinson

    Does anybody understand that this thing doesn't have an engine, that it's just a kind of bullet? This was "a glide test," and they will continue to be glide tests until somebody dreams up a Mach 20 air-breathing engine. Yes, know...ramjets, SCRAMjets, pulse jets, show me one that works.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Reply
    • Deep North

      thank you...It just falls very fast and has small control jets to try and control direction. 2 flights for 18 minutes ...9 minutes each before they say they lost contact.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:53 pm | Reply
      • John

        That's because after 9 seconds, it was going so fast it exited the atmosphere. It's past the moon by now.

        August 11, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
    • Reg

      it uses the little rockets, not air breathing though, but it could speed up the little bullet just the amount required to hit the target just a a little faster. It's only intended to be a delivery itself, no need for air breathers unless it had to take off again.

      August 12, 2011 at 8:23 pm | Reply
  54. Joebob

    We need Mr. Yaeger to hop into that rig and fly it back to the future 🙂

    August 11, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Reply
  55. jonjaccobjinjlehimerschmidt

    What do a bird and this thing have in common shape wise? Pretty similar. Difference? One flys in one direction and the other flys in the other direction....ie backwards. Turn it around guys! ....and make the big part rounded off. When the engineer who designed the first splash down space pod was told his design was ugly he told them something to the effect of "I didn't design it....physics did". Even kites have the big part in front and the slender part in the rear. Gimme a break.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:44 pm | Reply
    • Someone tired of idiots

      And when you get off your mom's couch, learn some aerodynamics, understand the goals of the system then comment. Till then shutup.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:55 pm | Reply
      • humberto

        Fuck You

        August 12, 2011 at 3:00 am |
      • Darpa_lover

        someone is an idiot, i hope it's not me. Especially true if it's falling (gliding). The heavy part should be in the front.

        August 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • ouka

      this thing doesn't fly, it falls. at these speeds you want as low a profile in front as you can in order to reduce air friction

      August 11, 2011 at 6:00 pm | Reply
    • threelittlefish

      Wow... Do bullets fly fat end foward? Nope! Do arrows fly feathers first? Nope! Leave the aerodynamics to those that actually know something about aerodynamics!

      August 11, 2011 at 6:06 pm | Reply
      • Darpa_lover

        bullet is propelled as is the arrow...but the heavy part is in front on an arrow

        August 12, 2011 at 3:45 pm |



    August 11, 2011 at 5:44 pm | Reply
    • Blatent Sarcasm


      August 11, 2011 at 5:54 pm | Reply
      • alex

        lolz. you clown.

        August 11, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  57. Deliveranc_e

    This is what happens when you play around with the 13 Crystal Skulls and the last one was glass, the 13th one had the "return to sender" info in it.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:38 pm | Reply
  58. David

    "fastest unmanned aircraft ever launched " ? Russians already have a hypersonic vehicle flying. So . . . .

    August 11, 2011 at 5:34 pm | Reply
    • Jerad

      What don't you understand about "fastest?"

      August 11, 2011 at 5:36 pm | Reply
    • chez

      i HIGHLY doubt that.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:37 pm | Reply
    • Gargamel

      Not that fast

      August 11, 2011 at 5:39 pm | Reply
  59. Hannibal7

    Sure does look like the craft that was in the Planet Of The Apes movie (1968 version).

    August 11, 2011 at 5:28 pm | Reply
    • Kim Hunter

      And here I though I was the only one who was old enough to notice that too!!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:34 pm | Reply
      • alex

        im pretty sure there are tons of people who have seen that movie regardless of their age. just cause it was made in 68, doesn't make you old lolz.

        August 11, 2011 at 6:04 pm |
    • MrSarcasm

      I thought for sure it was the ship that Steve Austin crashed in. He's a man barely alive you know.

      August 11, 2011 at 6:21 pm | Reply
  60. CGB Spender

    I'm sure some fisherman will find it and post it on EBay. I like this part of the article..HTV2 vehicle "has an autonomous flight termination capability". In the Air Force we call it crashing but with DARPA it’s a “autonomous flight termination”. So I guess we can also say in another article that our congress “autonomously terminated” their carriers. Not bad, I like it.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Reply
    • CA Pat

      You are definitely funny!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:44 pm | Reply
      • CA Matt

        You are easily amused. Raise your standards.

        August 11, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
  61. WhyUS?

    At the top, yes we spend the money to build lots of things in the US, yet why do we the US always have to worry about the starving people everywhere, maybe if you did not have so much corruption in those countries the lower class would be better off. A place like somolia is ruled by thugs, and when the US was there, we were not welcome, now its YOUR mess. Alot of these african countries wanted thier freedom from colonial rule, they got what they asked for and time has proven they cant do the job.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Reply
    • why as why

      your an off topic idiot.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:46 pm | Reply
    • Fred Evil

      Because moral humans always care about those who are suffering? Because those who are not selfish worthless PoS's actually want to HELP others, even in foreign countries?
      Nahhh....nobody like that in America but dirty hippies, right?

      August 11, 2011 at 5:49 pm | Reply
    • LBM

      Yes, it is so much easier to blame victims. The JUST WORLD theorem rules its ugly head yet again. I mean a few hundred years of colonial rule had nothing to do with the instability there now...


      August 11, 2011 at 6:01 pm | Reply
    • The Cuje

      lol your a funny man, have you ever asked anyone in a third world country to compare the US to Russia or china? To a lot of people, the US is the problem, and looked at as just as much of a threat as any Republic country (no offense to Russians or Chinese) especially if you are asking a 3rd world republic country? I hate to break it to you but many people think not only capitalism, free trade, and democracy are the issues at hand(These are not my opinions, i am a happy Canadian who doesn't take well to bias American beliefs) but also that the governmental and private dealings in America are more cut throat, corrupt, and social class dependent, that in turn if the world ever topped, America would be the enemy, not them. which to me makes total sense, i love America, north America at that, but you gotta remember how America uses economic hit men for damn near every country the us has diplomatic or non diplomatic relationships with. Do you understand why Somalia is in the state its in right now? lol your an asshole man, stop adding to the belief that Americans are idiots, your not doing very much right now to fix that stereotype.

      August 11, 2011 at 6:07 pm | Reply
    • justcause

      Are you seriouse? you are seriouse... freedom is priceless no matter how protected is your golden box...you need to get out a little...Your soldiers are dying for others freedoms and you are suggesting colonies should have remained.... get a brain...so far is just much banana

      August 11, 2011 at 6:17 pm | Reply
    • gary wilson

      spend US $ on the betterment of US (schools, road, colleges, science) and not on killing others.

      August 11, 2011 at 6:26 pm | Reply
      • Andre

        So spending money on defending America is not a good idea?

        August 13, 2011 at 7:23 am |
    • Mr.Dutch

      I'am glad to see that not every American citizen is a MORON like you!!

      August 11, 2011 at 6:28 pm | Reply
  62. cageordie

    They got nine minutes of data out of it, so I expect it was. It isn't as if it was manned or they were expecting to recover it, it was always intended to be lost in the ocean. They probably got a good percentage of the data they wanted from this flight. That's the way early trials of new stuff go, look at the early supersonic flights, if Miles M.52 hadn't solved a lot of the problems Bell might have lost Yaeger before they broke the sound barrier.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Reply
  63. vince

    this will be the emergency escape vehicle for Goldman Sachs (and other elite Billionaire corporations) when what remains of the middle class comes looking for blood...

    August 11, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Reply
  64. David J Hinson

    Never mind that research like this fuels the future. Never mind that a vehicle, if even briefly, hit more than 13,000 MPH in its first flight. How anyone on earth could not think this is cool is beyond me. Of course it is regrettable that its genesis is an offensive first-strike vehicle but that doesn't negate the fact that its an overwhelming undertaking thats finding some success. Some people act as if they expect it to work like clockwork the first time out. Thankfully, the Wright Brother and the rest of the pioneers of flight didn't give up so easy. Dare to dream people, its trial and error like this that power the future. Good on you Air Force, thanks for reminding me that really cool things are still possible.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:21 pm | Reply
    • Lostinspace

      I think we all know this is really cool ... it's just more fun to be snarky!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Reply
  65. zhawk88

    Somalian children starve, we build super-fast s___ that we cant find. Go USA!

    August 11, 2011 at 5:18 pm | Reply
    • joe

      Blame the Islamist for the starvation...not US!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:24 pm | Reply
    • Reality Check

      Perhaps this is being developed as a method of emergency food delivery to save starving people, they can't "eat" money you know.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:24 pm | Reply
    • Josh

      USA! USA! USA! USA!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Reply
    • Corinnian

      Fear not, zhawk88. With this technology we're going to be able to deliver food directly to these starving children in less than an hour! We'd like to once again thank, Papa John's Pizza for their sponsorship. Without them this would not be possible. Super fast sh_t, better pizza! Papa John's!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Reply
      • Klatu

        Most awesome comment...EVER

        August 11, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
    • Mark

      Somali* children starve, and pampered misfits like you in a relatively well-educated country (America) don't know that Somalian is not a word. f*ckin dunce.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Reply
      • joe

        Blow off Mark...who cares!!! It's anal's like you that need to sit in the corner with a dunce hat!

        August 11, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
    • jrfk

      zhawk88, LOL!!! That was great!!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:36 pm | Reply
    • j

      why is it our responsibility to feed somalis. let the somalis feed the somalis.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:39 pm | Reply
    • reACTIONary

      World hunger is a political problem, and can only be solved through political means. This is evident in Somalia. This vehicle will greatly contribute to the political and power of the United States, and our political power will be what eventually makes a positive difference for Somalis.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Reply
    • chuck chalupa

      Doesn't anyone but me remember who dragged our soldiers thu the streets of THIER capital?

      August 12, 2011 at 7:50 am | Reply
  66. Clark Nova

    Jealous of what? An almost-a-shuttle (1/20 scale) that's crashed every time it's been launched?

    August 11, 2011 at 5:14 pm | Reply
  67. MrSarcasm

    >>> Thursday's flight was to test control and communications capabilities <<<

    Good test?

    August 11, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Reply
    • reACTIONary

      A good test is one in which you learn and advance towards the goal. I suspect this was a good test.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:51 pm | Reply
      • Nico NL

        Not a good test, cause they tested communication and the Craft didn't responded with his location

        August 12, 2011 at 8:58 am |
  68. JAM61

    A lifetime... You are assuming that it came down in one piece... Hardly... Not from that altitude and not at that speed... Most likely the friction of re-entry ripped it to total shreds...

    August 11, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Reply
    • gnodges

      Re-entry? This vehicle stays in the atmosphere.....it's hot all the time at those speeds.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:21 pm | Reply
      • colonelklunk

        If you actually read the article, you would know that it clearly says it "re-entered the atmosphere."

        August 11, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  69. Clark Nova

    Good! This is just an overpriced attempt at developing a nuclear pre-emptive strike vehicle, which is something NO government should be trusted with.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Reply
    • cageordie

      They don't need to develop those, they've had them for half a century and more.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Reply
      • marcus

        no they didnt this is oviously more advance use common since it can go anywere were in the world in 45min to an hour thats gonna change war forever this is scaring enemy nations

        August 11, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • Gargamel

      This won't be developed into a nuclear warhead. At those speeds, the kinetic energy of the missile would be enough to level a small city, without any type of warhead, nuclear or conventional.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:38 pm | Reply
    • why as why

      Theres no one left worthy to nuke. Cave dwellers with AK-47's are not worth the cost of a nuke. GO USA!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:50 pm | Reply
      • marcus

        its an air craft like a jet or drone not a missile ,nuke or bomb . goooo usa

        August 11, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
    • reACTIONary

      Over priced? Given that DARPA created the Internet, it is impossible for us to over fund this organization. They are AWESOME. (Look up the prostetic arm they are funding. AWESOME!)

      August 11, 2011 at 6:01 pm | Reply
  70. A lifetime

    Well, that's one more piece of technology that we will have accidentally given to China. In ten years we will be buying copies of it, cause we can't make them here anymore....

    August 11, 2011 at 5:09 pm | Reply
    • Dave

      The technology we're INTENTIONALLY giving to China is a much bigger problem as it means less US jobs.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:14 pm | Reply
    • Hotstuff

      We come up with it .. China knocks it off without investing in it's design .. US consumers buy it. I know that's not exactly what you were going for but it's a perfect example of the mentality that's killing the US economy.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Reply
    • CelestialOne

      God Bless America. You guys are the best. Keep spending on developing all these wonderful toys. Raise the debt ceiling higher to fund all these innovations to help mankind. Forget about education, health etc. They are not priorities China is the greatest threat to USA. And if you need more funds, please send young Timmy to see his " uncle" Mr Wang Qishan. I am sure his "uncle" would be most willing to help.

      August 12, 2011 at 6:21 am | Reply
  71. Lostinspace

    This craft wasn't "lost", it just went into faster than light mode ... it will arrive at its destination last week.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:07 pm | Reply
    • Ringo

      No, no....light speed isn't fast enough. We need.....LUDICROUS SPEED!!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Reply
      • russ

        Haha!! good one!

        August 11, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
      • Darth Helmet

        What's the matter, Colonel Sandurz? CHICKEN?

        August 11, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
      • Asmuk

        yo mama

        August 11, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
    • zhawk88

      i find it funny that your name is lostinspace as well. 🙂

      August 11, 2011 at 5:16 pm | Reply
    • Marty Mcfly

      Once it hit 13,000 mph it generated the 1.21 gigawatts it needed to travel....back in time!

      August 11, 2011 at 5:19 pm | Reply
      • Doc Brown

        1.21 GIGAWATTS?!?!

        August 11, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
  72. Homer

    I betcha It flew out of the atmosphere.

    We'll see it again in 5,000 years.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:07 pm | Reply
  73. Stevelb1

    Thats what I call cash in the trash.

    August 11, 2011 at 5:06 pm | Reply
    • Sean

      And you would be a moron for doing so.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:14 pm | Reply
    • why as why

      steve, the amount of tech. that projects like this have generated for the average US citzen is enormous. This fact is also lost to your caveman-like brain.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:56 pm | Reply
  74. Reg

    Clearly it's designed to be mistaken for an airplane so the enemy doesn't know what hit it, and doesn't suspect it was a missile. Credible deniability, so we can say it's you neighbor who dunnit. The same deniability when they say the test failed, but could actually have been a brilliant success. They wouldn't let us know about the Stargate either, if they ever find one!

    August 11, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Reply
    • cageordie

      Clearly you expect saying clearly makes your assertion seem like a fact. Clearly it is not clear what they might have intended, pure speculation. But no, we don't employ people like this to tell the public the truth. Nine minutes was a good test at that speed so they probably got what they wanted out of it. Whatever that really was.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:31 pm | Reply
      • Reg

        Actually I was basing my assertion on information gathered from other news sources as well, besides this one. It's include other designer/analysts insights. Check for instance spacedaily.com.

        August 11, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
  75. cigarmikey

    you know I'm tired of the threats of war from other countries lets get it on already and unleash our secret arsenal and bomb the communists, and "IF" they some how land on the shores of this great nation ..... well have fun we got alota gangsters, hillbillies and suburban moms with Mini vans – which believe me is scary!

    August 11, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Reply
  76. Deep North

    At this point it is just a dysfunctional warhead!

    August 11, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Reply
  77. Lou Lozada

    It didn't help that the method of communication was "yelling instructions to it, really loudly." 😉

    August 11, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Reply
  78. Laslow

    This DARPA plane is one notch away from a space shuttle. I bet the folks over at NASA are jealous.

    August 11, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Reply
  79. Ronny

    I suggest checking out the flight deck of the new Chinese aircraft carrier...

    August 11, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Reply
  80. crazycatman

    "Autonomous flight termination capability" - Is that geekspeak for "It crashes"?

    August 11, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Reply
  81. asdfghjk

    What is the point of this "vehicle" It is so.... stupid. It's like a make believe UFO. It's a joke. It's not self propelled, it's not much more than a piece of metal mounted atop a rocket. That's nothing new. Waste of money.

    August 11, 2011 at 4:53 pm | Reply
    • uggghhhh

      That's what those idiots said watching the Wright Brothers. Go back to your cave and enjoy your ignorance.

      August 11, 2011 at 5:03 pm | Reply
      • Andre

        Man, good point there.

        August 13, 2011 at 7:30 am |
  82. Eric from kenya.

    In africa because of corruption and bad governance it a dream that wont come true to see our scientists do tat

    August 12, 2011 at 4:44 am | Reply
  83. humberto

    Thursday’s flight was to test control and communications capabilities, as well as heat resistance and other effects of hypersonic flight that all failed.
    The whole concept is stupid..

    whats wrong with the missiles ?

    August 12, 2011 at 3:25 am | Reply
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