Monday 17 March 2014

US military stealth bombers to try turning off transponders instead

Stealth Bomber transponder

The US defence department has said it will put on hold its billion dollar investment in stealth technology, after it turned out planes which switch off their transponder become invisible.

Despite decades of effort, and literally billions of dollars spent making their top-secret bombers invisible to radar, military insiders were disappointed to find out that simply switching off the transponder has much the same effect.

As one military strategist explained, “It’s important that our planes are essentially invisible and impossible to track by the enemy.”

“Our traditional approach to this problem was to invest in cutting-edge technology and futuristic design to trick older tracking technology into thinking we were a bird, or something really small.”

“We’d never considered flicking the switch marked ‘transponder’, but obviously we’re delighted to find such an innovative answer to such a significant military problem.”

“It’s just the sort of out of the box thinking the military appreciates.”

“And it’s so much cheaper. Just think of all the money we can now spend on the actual bombs rather than just the delivery mechanism.”

Transponder switch

Engineers in the US military have said the new direction for stealth technology has made their jobs far less satisfying.

Engineer Chuck Williams told us, “In my world stealth technology has always been the sexy project to work on, but not any more.”

“We’re literally just going around flicking switches on all of our planes. It’s incredibly tedious.”

“I thought by next year I’d be working on something like the battlefield invisibility cloak, but it looks like I’m just going to be glorified switcher-offer.”

“It’s like the bloody Russians and their ‘space pen’ all over again.”

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