U.S. Army tests football field-sized super spy blimp over New Jersey

By Muriel Kane
Friday, August 10, 2012 21:56 EDT
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LEMV test flight screencap
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The U.S. Army’s Long-Endurance Multi-Intelligence Vehicle (LEMV) — a high-tech robotic spy blimp — was launched for its 90-minute maiden voyage on Tuesday from a military base in Lakehurst, New Jersey.

The Lakehurst Naval Air Station is notorious as the location of the Hindenburg disaster of May 6, 1937. However, this latest experiment in light-than-air aeronautics appears to have gone more smoothly.

The Pentagon has spent hundreds of millions of dollars and years of development trying to gets its satellite-controlled LEMV off the ground, and months of testing still lie ahead. If all goes well, the vehicle may be deployed to Afghanistan next year to conduct surveilance and cargo hauling. According to manufacturer Northrop Grumman, it has the capacity to carry seven tons of cargo for 2,400 miles at 30 miles per hour.

This video was uploaded to YouTube by jmeriney on August 8, 2012.

Muriel Kane
Muriel Kane
Muriel Kane is an associate editor at Raw Story. She joined Raw Story as a researcher in 2005, with a particular focus on the Jack Abramoff affair and other Bush administration scandals. She worked extensively with former investigative news managing editor Larisa Alexandrovna, with whom she has co-written numerous articles in addition to her own work. Prior to her association with Raw Story, she spent many years as an independent researcher and writer with a particular focus on history, literature, and contemporary social and political attitudes. Follow her on Twitter at @Muriel_Kane
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