Iran claims to have test flown a remotely piloted aircraft based on reverse-engineered technology gleaned from a captured Lockheed Martin RQ-170 stealth RPA, reported the state Fars News Agency. “We had promised to fly the final model of RQ-170 in the second half of the current year and this has happened,” said Brig. Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, head of Iran’s air force, in the Nov. 10 report. “The footage of its flight will be released soon,” he added. Iran’s military claims that the RQ-170 brought do?wn in 2011 was redirected via electronic warfare means. US officials maintained that the RPA inadvertently strayed during operations over Afghanistan. According to the press report, Iran’s prototype RPA is a scaled-down version of the RQ-170, intended for both intelligence gathering and ground attack.
In a nighttime ceremony contrived to continue concealment of many of its features, the new B-21 bomber rolled out of Northrop Grumman's Palmdale, Calif. plant Dec. 2. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the aircraft's advanced technology represents "deterrence, the American way."