While the SR-72, a kind of descendant from the SR-71 “Blackbird” is a hypersonic UCAV, (see the article published in this blog on November 6) and it is said would be operative for 2020 –although the official announcement gives room to speculate about how many experimental flights have already been done— the RQ-180 is a stealthy reconnaissance UAV that can stay flying for weeks, and is a descendant of the Northrop Grumman X-47B, used by the US Navy.
The RQ-180 announcement was published in the latest edition of Aviation Weekly.
The RQ-180 is a drone that operates at high altitude, at sub-sonic speeds.
It is believed that there is a small fleet of this aircraft already flying over the world, and their base is at the famous Area 51.
The X-47B was an experimental drone, smaller than the RQ-180, and the first to takeoff and land from an aircraft carrier.