In 2007, DARPA committed to funding the development of a prototype unmanned aircraft called “Blackswift” that would be able to take off from a runway unassisted and be anywhere in the world within a few hours…
Two years later, Blackswift was dead, a victim of budget cuts and skeptical lawmakers. Now the Blackswift is back.
“Technically, this new development project being worked on by the U.S. Air Force won’t be Blackswift: it’ll be “the son of Blackswift,” whatever that means. The original idea behind the Falcon hypersonic vehicle program (of which Blackswift was a part) was to create an aircraft that could fly fast enough to make it anywhere it needed to be in an hour or two, a valuable capability for either a reconnaissance aircraft or a bomber.