The Pentagon intends to spend $400 million to develop a giant blimp which will reach an altitude of 65,000 feet and remain airborne for 10 years. The dirigible will be filled with helium and powered by an innovative system that uses solar panels to recharge hydrogen fuel cells. “It is absolutely revolutionary,” Werner J.A. Dahm, chief scientist for the Air Force, said of the proposed unmanned airship — describing it as a cross between a satellite and a spy plane. The aircraft will provide intricate radar surveillance of the vehicles, planes and even people below. The project is supposed to reflect a shift in Pentagon planning that is more about the intelligence and surveillance operations, and less about expensive high-tech weapons.
Much more at Cleantechnica