McDonnell Douglas Diamond Project
Early nineties, McDonnell Douglas managers understand that, like its competitors, and their business needs specialized department to develop and manufacture various advanced concepts in an extremely short time and at low cost. For this purpose was called the Phantom Works branch and one of its initial tasks was just building an advanced aeronautical engineering in miniature scale, able to test flight a few months after the start of development work. Increasing attention is also paid to research, while promising new materials and manufacturing processes. The experience gained should help the company win McDonnell Douglas in future tenders for new weapons systems. One requirement was to build an aircraft design that previously have never been used and verified as new opportunities in design and aerodynamics. Selection of winning concept wing joint or open diamond, which are basically two wings, one with a positive and a negative \u0161�povitos\u0165ou, connected at their ends. Thus was born Project Diamond, and his leadership was entrusted with an experienced manager Bill Butters. Part of team work while workers were in addition to stem Phanotm Works and volunteers from other departments of the company.
Another area of \u200b\u200binterest were the new controls to maneuver, which would disrupt the natural airflow around the aircraft and replaced the wings with a smaller effective alternative to radar reflections. Initial flight tests of radio-controlled demonstrator with a margin of just over three meters took place in late 1994, some of them without a vertical tail. As the project Diamond was a private initiative of McDonnell Douglas and had no status classification could also be presented in television and corporate information as the representatives of various government agencies like NASA and USAF. There he met with positive response, but the USAF expressed reservation on the low-speed demonstrator. Called for greater and faster prototype jet propulsion, which should be already available during the summer of 1995, ie only six months from contract award. This was in line with the philosophy of the whole project should demonstrate the ability of McDonnell Douglas quickly and efficiently respond to operational requirements for a potential customer. Another sub-issue was to determine the best use of the concept of joint wing test. Although the original idea of \u200b\u200bthe designers is moving towards more mouldable wing (except which \u0161�povitosti is changing its other characteristics, such as margin or the shape of the bearing surface), USAF planners have realized the potential of design as a sensor platform. The aircraft and in subsequent years, a little hoc incidentally, has become an iconic special category aerial vehicles, known as SensorCraft.