X-47b Unmanned Plane
by lesterd | on June 14, 2012
No, it wasn’t a UFO being transported on the Capital Beltway. Nor was it a weather balloon.
It was a Navy drone.
WTOP, a local Washington, D.C. radio station, reported a flurry on Twitter late Wednesday evening as residents and commuters saw a large and futuristic “saucer” holding up traffic near College Park.
Maryland State Police at the McHenry Barrack confirmed the aircraft seen on the Beltway was a military airplane being moved to Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Southern Maryland.
Although quite literally “under wraps,” the front of the plane and the published measurements seem to match the Northrop Grumman X-47b, not the X-46b as reported in the original WTOP article. Also unlike the WTOP report, the X-47b is not the same model of drone that crashed in Maryland on June 11.
However, since the X-47b is still under testing, it may be fears of a similar accident that prompted the military to transport their secrets down a highway rather than flying it to Patuxent. The X-47b has a range of over 2,000 miles.
Last year, Defense Tech reported on a similar scenario. Another X-47b was mistaken for a UFO as it was transported to Patuxent to practice take-offs and landings on a runway modeled after an aircraft carrier.
Northrop Grumman was the fourth largest defense contractor in the world in 2010.