Talk about improving commute time.
DARPA’s research and development in stealth technology during the 1970s and 1980s led to the world’s most advanced radar-evading aircraft, providing strategic national security advantage to the United States.
Today, that strategic advantage is threatened as other nations’ abilities in stealth and counter-stealth improve.
Restoring that battle space advantage requires advanced speed, reach and range. Hypersonic technologies have the potential to provide the dominance once afforded by stealth to support a range of varied future national security missions.
Extreme hypersonic flight at Mach 20 (i.e., 20 times the speed of sound) — which would enable DoD to get anywhere in the world in under an hour — is an area of research where significant scientific advancements have eluded researchers for decades.
Thanks to programs by DARPA, the Army, and the Air Force in recent years, however, more information has been obtained about this challenging subject.
“DoD’s hypersonic technology efforts have made significant advancements in our technical understanding of several critical areas including aerodynamics; aerothermal effects; and guidance, navigation and control,” said Acting DARPA Director, Kaigham J. Gabriel. “But additional unknowns exist.”