SHAAFT Supersonic-Hypersonic Attack Aircraft by duo ()
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Below are real informations from a research paper presented to US Air Force in 1996:
The SHAAFT (Supersonic/Hypersonic Attack Aircraft) is a dual stage hypersonic aircraft that fulfills future requirements (after 2025) for US Global Reach/Global Power. It is a mach 12 hypersonic aircraft that uses a "zero-stage" flying wing to stage at mach 3.5. It is designed for compatible use with a hypersonic missile, the SHMAC, and a transatmospheric (TAV) orbiter, the SCREMAR. These two components combine with the SHAAFT to form the S3 concept and allow for the fulfillment of the in-theater dominance and access to space mission requirements, respectively.
The propulsion system that is most likely used for hypersonic travel is a 'Pulse Detonation Wave Engine' (PDWE).
Liquid methane or liquid hydrogen is ejected onto the fuselage, where the fuel mist is ignited, possibly by surface heating. (These engines produce the famous 'donuts-on-a-rope' contrails).
Here is my "Artist's impression" of the SHAAFT aircraft from the research paper description.
Textured and rendered in Bryce 4.
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