Is the Air Force Hiding a Secret New Warplane?

Is the Air Force Hiding a Secret New Warplane?

by Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics

Satellites spotted strange objects at a mysterious airfield near Area 51.

A private satellite network has apparently detected what could be a secret fleet of aircraft at a remote airfield in Nevada. An overflight of the Tonopah Test Range in Nevada captured unusual activity on the ground that could be up to a dozen previously unacknowledged military aircraft. If so, this would be the first unofficial confirmation that the U.S. military is flying some new aircraft, manned or unmanned, not officially in the Pentagon’s air arsenal.

The War Zone first detected the objects in imagery taken by Planet Labs’ PlanetScope earth observation satellites on December 6. Planet Labs maintains a constellation of optical surveillance satellites worldwide, snapping pictures daily and beaming them down to Earth. The satellites have 3.7-meter ground sample resolution, meaning each pixel represents 3.7 meters, or 12 feet. Planet Labs uses these satellites for remote sensing purposes, allowing governments and corporations access to daily images of virtually every point on Earth. In 2018, Planet Labs nabbed these photos of China’s Southern Theater Navy in parade formation in the South China Sea.

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