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It has been suggested that the UCLASS (Unmanned Carrier-Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike system ) may start out as a flying gas station and gradually take on other roles, but that seems optimistic. Rather than being bound for glory, the UCLASS is likely headed for the museum of forgotten drones, joining its other successful—but overlooked— ancestors.

A well researched and fascinating history complete with links. The authors premise is that the ex-pilots don’t want to give any ground that could slow the F-35.
Turns out there is a long history of successful drone use starting with the mostly wood Interstate TDR-1 which carried a TV camera in WW2. In the 60’s came the Ryan Firebee target drone (pictured) which when fitted with a camera was called a “Lightning Bug” which flew thousands of mission over Vietnam – great story about how they took one to Top Gun where no one could hit it…

From www.popularmechanics.com

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