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LIGHTNING BUGS AND OTHER RECONNAISSANCE DRONES. [the can-do story of Ryan's unmanned 'spy planes']

Wagner, William

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ISBN 10: 0816866546 / ISBN 13: 9780816866540
Used Hardcover
From Articles of War Ltd (Silver City, NM, U.S.A.)

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Fallbrook, 1982, Aero, US first edition, hard bound in dust jacket, 7 1/2 x 10, VG/VG- condition ( dj shows light edge wear ), 222 pages, glossy page stock, prof. illustrated, index.---------------------------------------------Gathering intelligence remains one of the airplane's most significant and fascinating functions.In World War I, the first military use of aircraft was in gathering information behind enemy lines on troop dispositions and in serving as forward artillery observation posts.More than six decades later the intelligence-gathering function of the airplane remained essentially the same but the technique had undergone dramatic sophistication. 'In the early 1960s technicians took the pilot out of the plane's cockpit, put him on the ground at an electronic black box and had him `fly' spy missions by remotely controlling a pilotless jet airplane.Because of this advanced technique, formerly dangerous intelligence-gathering flights in hostile areas were possible without risking the lives of pilots or the loss of extremely costly manned aircraft.-----------------------------------This then is the story of `Lightning Bugs' and other Ryan reconnaissance drones and the contributions they made in combat in Southeast Asia.What made it possible was the can-do attitude of a small band of dedicated military and civilian Technicians and the use of red-tape-cutting techniques in response to significant international events. It's a fascinating story of QRC quick reaction capability which is invaluable in time of war.In addition to basic daytime aerial photo reconnaissance of `enemy' territory, the `Lightning Bug' missions were expanded to include electronic intelligence (Flint), communications intelligence (Comint), night photo, chaff dispensing and leaflet distribution.------------------------------------------Paralleling these wartime missions were state-side demonstrations of surface-to-surface weapons delivery, simulated air-to-air combat `dog-fights,' and air-to-surface weapons delivery for the suppression of defense installations.The original reconnaissance missions and the additional demonstrated capabilities of unmanned aircraft were all designed to minimize the exposure of American pilots to unacceptable risks.The manuscript was written as the war in Vietnam was drawing to a troubled close but is only now being published because of years-long delay due to security and policy considerations. Bookseller Inventory # 22576

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Bibliographic Details


Binding: Hardcover

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


San Diego aviation Historian William Wagner's book. Second Library copy- San Diego Air and Space Museum.

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