The Defense Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is set to test its super-fast, unmanned aircraft this Thursday. Called the Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2 (HTV-2), it’s capable of speeds up to 13,000 miles per hour – fast enough to get from Los Angeles to New York in less than 12 minutes.
The test will begin with a launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The aircraft will climb to an undisclosed altitude and reach speeds of around Mach 20 before landing in the Pacific Ocean, near the Kwajalein Atoll. The 4,100 mile trip will take less than 30 minutes, if successful.
The aircraft’s shape and speed are such that it could easily be mistaken for something from out of this world. Check out the video, below, for a short CGI clip of the vehicle.