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800px-Aurora x-plane 3

The Aurora is an alleged hypersonic spy plane developed in the 1980s or the 1990s, but currently there is no hard evidence to support its existence, even though many people have reported sightings.[1]


The term "Aurora" originates from a blacked out report where "Aurora" was left available, and for which the visible content matched expectations of such a spyplane. The plane is reportedly the successor to the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird.

The name Aurora is not assured to have ever been connected to this putative spyplane, as other sources indicate that the Aurora program was a different program that appeared in the report, and the spyplane used a different codename. The Los Angeles Times broke the news that the term "Aurora" had been inadvertently included in the 1985 U.S. budget as an allocation of $80 Million for aircraft construction in fiscal year 1986 and $2.3 billion for funding "black aircraft production" in fiscal year 1987 [2][3]. Lockheed Skunk Works engineer Ben Rich stated in a memoir published in the 1990s that "Aurora" was the budget codename for the Advanced Technology Bomber (ATB) competition that led to the B-2 Spirit.[4] However "Aurora" has been the name that has entered popular culture in connection with this plane.

Aurora Specs[]

All named specification are pure speculation, they are based on assumptions on how a SR-71 successor could perform.

  • Replacement for: SR-71 Blackbird
  • Maximum speed: Mach 5-6
  • Max altitude: 135,000 feet (possibly 110,000 feet)
  • Crusing altitude: 90,000 feet (Possibly 100,000)
  • Powerplant: Speculated to be a scramjet
  • Crew: Possibly 2
  • Max thrust: unknown

Some sightings:[]

In 1989 Chris Gibson was at the north sea and saw the figure of a black triangle refueled by a KC-135. It then flew away. Chris Gibson is good at identifying military aircraft but he did not know what this was.

Aurora-artist-impression-w445 13159

Cutaway view of the putative Aurora spyplane by Bill Sweetman