Roll Call: The News Source of Capitol Hill Since 1955
October 31, 2014

Navy Unable to Repeat Unmanned X-47B Landing

Navy Times reports that “the X-47B unmanned jet, which successfully landed twice last week on an aircraft carrier, was unable to repeat the feat Monday, U.S. Navy sources confirmed July 16.”

“The aircraft nailed its first two landing attempts July 10 on the USS George H. W. Bush, but a third landing that day was aborted when the aircraft’s systems detected a problem with an onboard computer. Following its programming, the aircraft then flew to a ‘divert’ field at Wallops Island, Va., where it remains.”

Categories: News
  • trisul

    “The aircraft nailed its first two landing attempts July 10 on the USS George H. W. Bush, but a third landing that day was aborted”

    Likewise, Bush only had two terms in office …

    • JAFF3

      Wrong Bush the carrier is named after the 1st Bush who only had 1 term

      • trisul

        Whoops! How true …

        • Danlien

          W as in WHOOPS!

      • rrm1973

        Yea, but it’s still W’s fault.

    • bob

      WTF does that have to do with anything?

  • Pingback: Instapundit » Blog Archive » STILL A FEW BUGS IN THE SYSTEM: Navy Unable to Repeat Unmanned X-47B Landing….()

  • Blacque Jacques Shellacque

    “…but a third landing that day was aborted when the aircraft’s systems detected a problem with an onboard computer. Following its programming, the aircraft then flew to a ‘divert’ field at Wallops Island, Va., where it remains.

    Sounds to me like the UAV did exactly what it was expected to do.

  • Pingback: Autonomous drone lands itself on aircraft carrier | Outrun Change()

  • koblog

    Understand that the X-47B is an autonomous unmanned combat air system. There is no pilot with a joystick watching a monitor or flying it like an RC model. It takes off, flies its flight program (which can be modified as necessary during the flight), eventually aerial refuel itself from another UCAS if necessary, acquire and attack its target, navigate back to the carrier, deconflict with a skyful of other manned Hornets, Growlers, helos, CODs and Hawkeyes, get itself into the pattern, line up and land, catching the number two wire in any sea state even when the deck is pitching up and down violently in heavy weather or at night — by itself.

    BY ITSELF.

    It will self-diagnose any squawks while in flight so ground crews will be ready to make any repairs upon its return. It did something like this on its first day in the fleet and diverted safely nstead to a ground base, harming no people or equipment.

    Excellent first day for the next generation of the US Navy.

    • Chuck Pelto

      Welcome to SKYNET (Air) Model 1

  • Ray_Van_Dune

    Isn’t the title misleading? “Unable to repeat…” sounds like the Navy tried multiple times to land again and failed. What really happened seems to be that a fault was detected, the system functioned correctly in response, and the aircraft is ashore, as the fault is analyzed.

    Did you guys hire a headline writer from the NY Times or Washington Post?

  • bak Lau

    awww what a shame. Oh well, they could invent unmanned flying hamburgers so that people dont have to go to the Mac or Burger

    • Slider

      +100500 )))))

    • thesparky1

      Well close. I live three blocks from a McD’s. I could use a web app to order a meal, like you do with Pizza Hut, Mazzios, Ken’s, etc. Then I simply deploy my consumer model copter to pick it up for me. All I’m out is some electricity used to power the craft. They fly in the ointment is some pimple faced neighbor jamming my frequencies and diverting the order to his 2nd floor room. For that I would have other copters on encrypted digital frequencies well above his allowance. It would convene a recovery mission for my missing nugget meal. It recovers the missing copter and meal and on the way out, fires an M-80 out the back side. If I’m really naughty, I’ll fire something we made back in high school. I would fire an Estee rocket at the kid’s room that has a shotgun shell mounted on the front backwards that has a thumbtack, cracker, and marble attached to the primer. It hits the target inside the kid’s room and detonates a 00 shell. Not very good for people within a 20-foot radius.

      • thesparky1

        Several of our group who made those missiles went on to military careers. But one went on to work at Sandia National Labs. Needless to say, reunions are a blast with him. Hint: Reagan’s Raygun is not dead.

  • Slider

    Millions of taxpayer dollars spent foolishly. The bad aerodynamics, visibility for air defense systems. Russian air defense intersect without problemma. Why do I need this product? Return the money to the people!

  • Andrew

    Then put a man in it! A pilot would have landed it!

    This idea of unmanned aircraft first surfaced in the 1950s when missiles were supposed to be on the point of making manned aircraft obsolete. Then the aerial gun wasn’t going to be needed any more – F-4 crews paid for that idea in Vietnam! Now we are back at trying to dispose of the pilot again.

  • BK Martin

    I wonder, will they name it the Terminator???

  • dogbite186

    The story relates that during the testing process, two out of three landings were executed, but a third was cancelled by the craft’s own computer system. The headline is misleading in that it assumes a pejorative commentary over the reporting of facts. I think it is time for the management to tell us more about the political motivations of Chris Ribak or his editor.

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