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-   -   Concept: airplane that can split into 3! (http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=249655)

Romulan_spy July 17 2014 04:25 PM

Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
I found this concept video from BAE for a drone fighter plane that could split into 3 smaller fighter planes and recombine after the mission.

It reminded me of the vector assault mode of the USS Prometheus from Voyager's "Message in a Bottle":

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Re29lqCEtpc

Could this concept become reality? It looks super cool but I still feel like it is pointless. Just like with the USS Prometheus, I think it would be far easier to just build 3 separate planes to begin with rather than trying to create a plane that split into pieces.

Gov Kodos July 17 2014 04:38 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Without reference to a tactical advantage or purpose, any weapons system is pointless. Why make a submarine capable of performing as an aircraft carrier? The Japanese might tell you.

scotpens July 17 2014 07:30 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Yeah, I'm not sure what the advantages of such an aircraft would be, but it has a great "coolness factor." It reminds me of some of the stuff from Gerry Anderson's Thunderbirds and U.F.O.

Romulan_spy July 17 2014 09:32 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
I could situations where it could be useful. It could split so as to engage three different targets that are far apart and then recombine afterwards to return home. Or, it could split and use one as decoy, the other to paint the target and the third piece to engage and then recombine to return home. But again, these scenarios could be just as easily accomplished with three standard planes working together.

Samurai8472 July 17 2014 10:24 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Quote:

Romulan_spy wrote: (Post 9851881)
I found this concept video from BAE for a drone fighter plane that could split into 3 smaller fighter planes and recombine after the mission.


Human torch- Is it a "Hemi"?

Metryq July 17 2014 10:51 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
The F-14 "Tomcat" could fire on six targets at once, although I don't know if it was ever used that way in actual combat. I don't see any advantage at all in this "transformer" plane design, while the concept is exceedingly risky. The D-21 drone experiments on the SR-71 demonstrate that, and those experiments were separation, only. Recombining into a solid airframe in-flight is nothing like docking in the vacuum of space.

varek July 18 2014 06:21 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
The concept reminds me of some UFO reports about lights (theoretically representing aircraft) that break into multiple parts then recombine.

So, maybe it's possible.

farmkid July 18 2014 07:12 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Quote:

Metryq wrote: (Post 9853960)
Recombining into a solid airframe in-flight is nothing like docking in the vacuum of space.

My first thought as I watched this was to wonder how the system dealt with the massive turbulence so close to each piece. As they got close to dock, or at the first moment of separation, that turbulence would be extremely violent and dangerous.

Tiberius July 19 2014 03:40 AM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Quote:

Romulan_spy wrote: (Post 9851881)
I found this concept video from BAE for a drone fighter plane that could split into 3 smaller fighter planes and recombine after the mission.

It reminded me of the vector assault mode of the USS Prometheus from Voyager's "Message in a Bottle":

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Re29lqCEtpc

Could this concept become reality? It looks super cool but I still feel like it is pointless. Just like with the USS Prometheus, I think it would be far easier to just build 3 separate planes to begin with rather than trying to create a plane that split into pieces.

Or at the very least, have small planes that can be carried inside the bomb bay of a larger plane, so they can be deployed once in the air.

A similar thing was done ages ago, actually.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bYtazEBQ1K8

sojourner July 19 2014 03:55 AM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Quote:

varek wrote: (Post 9857731)
The concept reminds me of some UFO reports about lights (theoretically representing aircraft) that break into multiple parts then recombine.

So, maybe it's possible.

Yep, nothing says "viable" like a report of mysterious lights in the sky.

scotpens July 19 2014 06:18 AM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Quote:

Tiberius wrote: (Post 9860035)
Quote:

Romulan_spy wrote: (Post 9851881)
. . . Just like with the USS Prometheus, I think it would be far easier to just build 3 separate planes to begin with rather than trying to create a plane that split into pieces.

Or at the very least, have small planes that can be carried inside the bomb bay of a larger plane, so they can be deployed once in the air.

A similar thing was done ages ago, actually.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bYtazEBQ1K8

The U.S. Navy also tried using the dirigibles Akron and Macon as flying aircraft carriers.

Tiberius July 19 2014 07:52 AM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Quote:

scotpens wrote: (Post 9860782)
Quote:

Tiberius wrote: (Post 9860035)
Quote:

Romulan_spy wrote: (Post 9851881)
. . . Just like with the USS Prometheus, I think it would be far easier to just build 3 separate planes to begin with rather than trying to create a plane that split into pieces.

Or at the very least, have small planes that can be carried inside the bomb bay of a larger plane, so they can be deployed once in the air.

A similar thing was done ages ago, actually.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bYtazEBQ1K8

The U.S. Navy also tried using the dirigibles Akron and Macon as flying aircraft carriers.

http://img2.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb2...nard_Nimoy.jpg
Fascinating. A very interesting read...

FPAlpha July 19 2014 09:12 AM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
As others have said it looks too complicated and if you don't want something in a weapon it's complexity.

There are so many things that can fail and such aircraft have to operate in any weather so if thereńs heavy rain/storm in the target area you can't send in your cool drone? That alone would immediately disqualify it from actual use.

Such things work in movies but in reality i don't see either the point or the tactical advantage that would outweigh the limitiations of this design.

Tiberius July 19 2014 12:35 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
ANd how would the control surfaces work on the front aircraft anyway?

publiusr July 19 2014 08:03 PM

Re: Concept: airplane that can split into 3!
 
Quote:

Gov Kodos wrote: (Post 9851932)
Without reference to a tactical advantage or purpose, any weapons system is pointless.

In other words:
You've failed me again Starscream!

Similar
http://www.smh.com.au/travel/the-fut...612-2o3nq.html
http://www.google.com/patents/US6070831

Now I will say this--it might surprise someone on your six, to have this auto-drone come apart. You think you just need to fire at one target, and all of a sudden, there are three.

My favorite idea was the concept of a B-1R missile truck, perhaps serving as a fighter destroyer. Have drones coax enemy planes into a ballistic footprint, and unleash hell--very long range missiles--with a powerful enough radar in that Bone's nose to light up even moderately stealthy designs.

Back on topic--a fuselage that can parachute down would save the lives of passengers--perhaps a parachute atop a blended wing body.

That might be harder for a missile to fragment than standard cruciform designs.


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