Re: USS Groom Lake

Message posted by Hal on August 10, 2002 at 21:18:08 PST:

Good post. A lot of speculation, some close, some not, but it was enjoyable reading.

One item that I can talk about got my interest. Your assumption that such a craft would appear to be noise on a radar. Close! In the 80's we were testing a new version of the SPS-48 radar, dubbed the E model--when it went operational in the fleet it was designated the SPS-48D.

The E model had some interesting computer systems--one system correlated data from all radars on a ship and tried to come up with an actual ID of a target, utilizing observed data such as speed, altitude, radar cross-section, etc., and a computer library. During the at-sea test it correctly ID'ed two Bear's out of Cuba, 150+ miles away--verified by CAP. It could see the returns off of those 4 turbo-props.

Anyway, while at the land-based test site in Maryland, the system detected an intense return that was very slow moving. when asked to ID the return, the computer indicated it was a small tunderstorm cell. It was the Goodyear blimp, taking off from Dulles!! And that blimp was not trying to be stealthy. A stealty craft could be noise.

Pulse-doppler radars process an aircraft's speed. To eliminate ground returns there are various filters associated with velocity. Slow down enough and a pulse-doppler radar would have difficulty seeing you, stealthy or no.

In Reply to: USS Groom Lake posted by Rocketfox on August 10, 2002 at 7:04:16 PST:


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