Specialized in aviation – defense Aviation Week recently quoted a Lockheed Martin spokesman as saying that the Skunk Works team is about to test a new drone called the Speed Racer (Speed Racer). Skunk Works is still waiting to receive motivation from Technical Directions Inc. (TDI) production.
Lockheed Martin announced the Speed Racer project in September 2020, but no information about the parameters or the purpose of the aircraft’s use was disclosed. However, information about an aircraft produced by Skunk Works made defense enthusiasts excited because it had built many famous aircraft such as the SR-71 Blackbird and U reconnaissance aircraft. -2 Dragon Lady or stealth fighter F-117A Nighthawk.
In terms of drones, Skunk Works has a variety of products such as the DarkStar spy aircraft or the RQ-170 Sentinel.
DarkStar drone scouting aircraft
According to analysis of Aviation WeekThe fact that Skunk Works chose to use TDI engines shows the possibility that the new aircraft could be small in size since the company’s engine models once produced had the largest diameter of only about 22 cm.
On the other hand, Skunk Works employees have confirmed the new model was produced to confirm the capabilities of a digital technology called StarDrive. By page Popular Mechanics, this technology involves using computer software to create a “digital aircraft” model. Engineers can use this virtual plane to test the performance of the model, before using that design to build a real plane.
The SR-71 Blackbird remains the fastest spy plane in the world
This approach is supposed to help accelerate aircraft development and reduce production costs. In 2020, the US Air Force revealed that it had developed and tested a new generation fighter with this digital technology within just 1 year. By comparison, the design and development of the F-35 is believed to last for two decades.
On the other hand, Speed Racer project manager Joe Pokora says the name Speed Racer is an acronym and does not imply that Skunk Works will build a high-speed aircraft. However, the fact that this aircraft is designed according to StarDrive digital technology suggests the name Speed Racer may refer to the speed of the design and manufacture of the aircraft.