Radar Cross Section (RCS)


Sandbar, San Diego, CA

Sometimes a basic BLT works wonders.

I like to dip my fries in blue cheese dressing. Some prefer ranch or catsup. It all works.


Queso Fundido

The name of the dish is literally, “melted cheese”.  But it’s pretty good.


Bad Penny  (meme-of-the-day)


Are we taking UAV tech too far, too fast? (USNI)

“There is a lot of commonality across [the Defense Department] with the other Future Vertical Lift programs that are out there. But we recognize that there are different missions for the Navy – different challenges we have, in particular the need to be getting on and off our surface combatants, whether that’s our destroyers, our future large surface combatant, or FFG(X),” Harris said. “And so we’ll try to take advantage of as many of those common areas we have, particularly with the Marine Corps as they go after their MALE, their medium-altitude long-endurance system. And where we can find those commonalities, we’ll take advantage of that to drive costs down and to increase commonality across all of those pieces.”

It’s all sweet until you loose “link”. And then they splash. Hopefully when they splash they’re not carrying a squad of mud Marines to a beach somewhere.

The Marine Corps was pursuing its Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Expeditionary program, or MUX, which was the service’s version of the Navy’s FVL effort. But last year, the Marine Corps scrapped its original plans to immediately develop a large ship-based UAV. Recently, the Marine Corps has been operating the MQ-9 Reaper, a group 5 UAV flown by the Air Force, and plans to take lessons learned from using that platform and apply them to developing MUX, or its medium-altitude long-endurance system (MALE).


OV-280 Valor

One of the pitches for the V-280 Valor, attack tilt-rotor aircraft was to make it pilot/crew optional.

The advanced tilt rotors are facing an uphill battle because they aren’t stealthy enough or fast enough and don’t have the legs needed. Armoring them heavily just exacerbates the problem. Slower, shorter range, and so forth. But you have to admit that the artist’s concept is cool.



  1. I just saw a article about the
    Navy’s Seahawk unmanned trimaran. Wasn’t very clear as to its purpose though.

  2. Several years ago I noticied that Bell was in the midst of flight testing its proof of concept remote controlled tilt rotor (their unofficial response to my inquiry confirmed what I was seeing). Other than thinking it was some very cool toys, I hadn’t thought much of it. Until now.

    My answer to the question posed by Simpleman is that purpose is open ended and assigned secondary priority, that p-o-c is key at this time. And defense contractors are so closely aligned with the branches that the relationship is one where the contractors provide the engineering (cost plus) and the DOD budgets to carry forward from there – regardless if a particular project comes to fruition and widely spaced milestones.

    We’re in a time where new technologies and new applications are coming so swiftly that operational phase is not really a priority. This may very well be the result of ineffective leadership, or, the ill defined objectives thereof. We’ll need a war to regain focus.

    The less pessimistic view is the cyberspace is being prepared and is to be so daunting that none belligerents dare to start anything. It is the 21st century walk softly but carry a big stick. Although I doubt this.

    • Some of the readers of this blog may not realize that I was in the UAV business for a while. Literally, the bulk of the Planetary Science Department of Cal Tech quit to start a UAV company and it was them and me. Some of the old blogging covered that. So I’m not anti-drone. But to me, you need a SOLID understanding of what they can do and what they can’t do before you make everything remote controlled.

      One day, and I don’t know when that will be, quantum computing will produce AI’s that can operate very much the same way that humans do WITHOUT a link controlling them. (SkyNet will go sentient and send terminators out to exterminate us… Hopefully they start with Congress.)

      Until then, a lot of what is promised for MILITARY applications is vaporware, because any sophisticated adversary will eliminate the bandwidth that they need to operate with. We will do it, the Chinese, Russians, Israelis, etc. will do it. Promised performance requires an unsophisticated adversary that will not start shooting our satellites out of the sky, etc.

      • It seems to me that if any technology “requires” GPS or a data link to work, it’s not going work if a war starts.

        • That’s how I see it. Orienteering should always be taught with a compass and a paper map, IMHO. I realize that it’s impossibly old fashioned.

          • Old tech will become fashionable again when the Covid Vaccine induced Zombie Apocalypse comes around. A man should have basic skills.

          • You learn stuff in the Army (or Navy as the case may be) you can use your whole life. That marching in a straight line whilst counting cadence business has been incredibly valuable. But orienteering, that had to be the best thing the Army taught me. I got good enough at it that a compass became damn near superfluous during daylight hours. I wonder do they still teach it?

          • If it isn’t paper-map-and-compass it isn’t Orienteering, it’s being ordered about by a robot.


  3. after what happened with the aziri’s, the navy and everybody else had better step it up with tech. think swarm/anti-swarm. seems the turks were jumping ahead while we were distracted.

    • To be fair, the US Navy has anti-swarm tech on their radar – prioritized just under social justice, offering gender reassignment, and renaming all bases for civil rights leaders. If the military stops being the military and starts being a social experiment — while paying beltway bandits princely sums — nothing else will matter.

      I would like to see the navy focus on maintaining what we have, but that’s just me, a belching, worthless civilian, dripping with white privilege talking.

      I read that there is this “big fix” for the littoral combat ships. The fix, divined by the bandits that delivered the ships in the first place is not scrapping them, of course. Another $50 billion or so and everything will be made right – which will blossom into $100 billion in over-runs. This on a platform that’s worthless in the first place. There is also a “big fix” coming for the Zumwalt Class that will allegedly make them combat effective. I have no idea what the price tag will be, but you know that it will be a lot… all while the Navy persecutes people for being white or male or both.

  4. It might help folks to know that when they talk about radar cross section, it’s not the view that picture shows (from above). It’s usually a front view, looking toward the nose of the aircraft. And a lot goes into it.

  5. Now that’s a BLT! Hopefully you were able to enjoy the meal without being accosted by the Covidiots. Me, not so lucky. Town run yesterday (that one to the south). Before escaping, picked up a pre-ordered dinner. Went in, wasn’t quite ready…was told by the young gal (politely but with a slight “tone”) to wait outside on the sidewalk because I “wasn’t wearing a mask”. Fine, it’s their place….said “I see.”. For the past year we helped keep them in business with large orders and excessively large tips. While standing outside like some idiot, looked in the window and saw all the patrons at tables were mask-less. Huh? When the gal brings the order out she hands it too me like I was a Leper and hurry’s off.

    I figure the Perception Manipulation has gotten so bad that if these types were told “we’re in the clear”, they would continue unabated as if their lives depended on it. The brainwashing is complete.

    Bad Penny- More like “Rotten Peanut”…rotting from the head down. I’m normally not uncharitable but have been making an exception for this guy and his team of scumbags who are purposely blowing up America and oppressing the masses. Special place in Hell…

    Queso- Not so good for the health but tastes great. Trade-offs, like most things in life.

    • PaulM, sometimes I wear a mask (their place, their rules) and at other times, I’m menacing. If they treat me like a leper, I cough loudly. MRSLL is often embarrassed by my behavior. The other day she mentioned that I can be somewhat of a pill (polite word) when dealing with the general ignorant public. I’m not afraid to take people on who fux with me. She is not that kind of person. I asked, “when have you seen me use abusive language?” She hadn’t. But I have my ways, as do we all. She has seen me physically deal with people who were physically aggressive with me, and the fight ends quickly. Not often, but I have. I think that my point here is that I’m in the same boat that you are. In Arizona, I rarely see a mask unless I’m going into a Costco or something like that. The signs now say that “masks are encouraged” which means that I won’t wear one. Or “Masks are encouraged unless you have a health condition that precludes wearing one,” which means that I won’t wear one.

      COVID inoculations (J & J, Pfizer, etc) are available to everyone here and they’re “free”. So why wear a mask? If you want a shot, you can get a shot. If you want a card that says you’ve had a shot but you don’t want the shot, I’ve heard that they’re available too.

      Most of the timid souls, triple masked, are pathetic creatures and I leave them alone. Messing with them is like messing with a clueless child. There is little joy in annoying them. You’re engaging in a game of wits with an unarmed person.

      Queso – all things in moderation.

      • I never make the owner of an establishment uncomfortable, they are in a tough spot and it is their place and their livelihood. So I get their position (the reasonable ones, I don’t go into the Covid-Rabid places). I have a neck gaiter that I have used half a dozen times in a year, hate it with a passion, like getting pulled over and taken to jail because you look like the suspect…freedom elimination is palpable to us normal’s.

        Funny how shots are free…nothing is free. Big Pharma is laughing all the way to the bank…and I can’t prove but believe, some of these vax’s are nefarious, the next step in the Covid weapon release on folks. I do not trust THAT science, the advent of DNA science means the lab rats and Lex Luther types can do just about anything to the unsuspecting.

        Honest question: Are we/have been living in Baldacci’s “The Whole Truth”? The level of Perception Management False Narrative is obvious to those with the veil lifted.

        • BTW, we’ve ordered take out from that same restaurant half a dozen times in the past 8 months without a mask picking up an order, the owner never gave me a hard time…but this was a new – dare I say – white gal. If the shoe fits…apparently the college indoctrinated white self-loathers love others to feel their pain of being born.

          • The Whole Truth (film and a book) “A small group of people manipulate the world into believing that the Russians did a bad thing by using fake news articles, the internet and the media to spread the lies in order to bankroll a war for the benefit of an unscrupulous defense contractor.”

            Life imitates art.

          • Yes…latest was Sars Cov-2, having gotten better at the subversive grift, now expanded to all areas of life. “To what end?” is obvious.

          • Yesterday late afternoon for a few essentials not found north. If things play out too far might see a Covid checkpoint at North College somewhere around Jax Farm and Ranch to keep us unwashed from contaminating town.

    • Pizza/calzones/sandwiches place down the street is run by a nice middle-aged Greek couple. They bought the place a few years ago and by dint of working 12-16h days were doing pretty well until The Plague. Over the past year they’ve had to lay off all their staff and are barely hanging on. “Mike, I tell you, some days we lose money opening up, even though it’s only the two of us now.” Unfortunately one of the cut staff was the one who made good pizzas (the owners always overcook). Still, I head over regularly to give them business. Local local local/ support your non-chain small business and all that.

      Can’t tell what they really think about The Plague (though it’s pretty clear the husband is is sick of the woke insanity in general). There was a time when the wife would wipe down the cash with Purell before putting it in the register (/eyeroll) but she seems to have relaxed a bit over the last few months. I wear a mask going inside, so as to not get them in trouble (the town requires anyone in a public space to wear a mask, and the owners are de facto responsible for enforcing it).

      I don’t mask up walking around outside though (which violates official edict for the town). The most shit I’ve gotten is from a few high-IQ types berating [1] me for failing to care about THEIR health, but over all very few incidents, even though I’m far from “Scary Mike” as I just don’t have the physical presence. That said, I’ve been told that “you get this ‘thing’ around the eyes, like you’re about to go for the neck” when seriously annoyed and these days that’s my default state when out and about. Took a somewhat timid male work friend out to pick up takeout dinner a few weeks ago. Seeing me maskless on the street he decided to emulate me. When we got back into the office he said something like,”Wow, you could just feel the hatred out there.”
      “What? What hatred?”
      “All the people giving us dirty looks. You know, for not having masks.”
      Either I’m seriously failing to pick up hostility/threat cues (this is NOT the problem) or work friend is seeing stuff that isn’t there. I did say he’s a bit timid, but this is ridiculous. The TL;DR is that it’s an anecdote illustrating how The Plan is working.

      PS: “The Plan” is a figure of speech. There is no one single grand evil plan concocted by a room full of evil gnomes smoking cigars and cackling while petting albino cats. It’s a much more distributed attack, but effectively it’s as if there is an overarching plan.

      [1] Actually, I’m not sure if “you stupid asshole” is mere berating, or it it rises to Assault. Either road, I’m not proud that I responded by calling the person a “dumbass” in return.

      • Scary part is this is from the government, which means once in place it’ll never go away, and some people will love that because they believe it is now normal to be under oppression rules by those who couldn’t get a job filling fries carton at McDonald’s.

      • Mike_C, it’s good of you to support the mom and pop shops. I try to do the same. A great Italian deli is a treasure to be cherished.

  6. If you were devising a long term plan to defeat a much stronger opponent, a relative cheap approach would cause your opponent to spend time and money on nonsense policies and weapon systems that don’t work but suck up funds. You accomplish this by corrupting the decision makers at all levels.

    Is this what is happening?

  7. Artist’s concept is very cool, as are the food shots. I especially like the first one, which seems to include bacon.

  8. #1 reason for the Drone Obsession – politicians are morons, and don;t realize they are R/C toys that still need human operators.

    Thus, they think they are building programmable AI Murder Robots, whjo will obey the politicians’ every whim, and they’ll soon be able to fire all the actual service personnel, with their irritating Free Will.


Comments are closed.