Lockheed A-12: The CIA's Blackbird and other variants

Lockheed A-12: The CIA's Blackbird and other variants

by Paul F Crickmore, Adam Tooby

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Overview

Lockheed A-12: The CIA's Blackbird and other variants by Paul F Crickmore, Adam Tooby

During the early years of the Cold War, the most effective way to gather strategic intelligence about the Soviet Union and its allies was manned overflight. Lockheed's U-2 was spectacularly successful in this role, however, much to the concern of US President Eisenhower, its shape meant that it could be tracked on Russian radars. Given the highly sensitive nature of such flights, the President insisted that every effort should be made to reduce to zero the U-2's radar cross section (RCS), thereby making the aircraft invisible. When this was proven to be impossible, the stage was set for a U-2 replacement. Following a competition between Lockheed and Convair, the former was declared the winner and the result was the A-12. Designed to incorporate 'stealth' features before the term was even coined, the A-12 has to date proven to be the fastest, highest flying jet aircraft ever built. This book will also cover a two-seat variation of the design built as an advanced interceptor – the YF-12.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781472801159
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 01/20/2014
Series: Air Vanguard , #12
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 64
Sales rank: 724,753
File size: 9 MB

About the Author

During his time as an air traffic controller at the London Air Traffic Control Centre, Paul Crickmore gained a unique introduction into SR-71 operations from RAF Mildenhall, Suffolk. Teaming up with Osprey produced the first detailed book ever to be published on the subject. When additional information became available to him in 1990 following the initial shutdown of SR-71 operations, Crickmore produced an even more detailed book, Lockheed SR-71 The Secret Missions Exposed the standard reference work on the subject. The work was acclaimed by the aviation press, Ben Rich (late president of the Skunk Works) and the crews that flew the SR-71. He is also the author of the first detailed book about the F-117 written in partnership with his wife Alison; published by Motorbooks International in 1999.

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