A Big, Jet-Powered Navy Drone Crashed in Maryland

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The drone that crashed in an uninhabited, marshy area of Maryland Monday afternoon was no model plane but a 44-foot-long jet-powered Navy aircraft.

We still don't know what caused the RQ-4A Global Hawk drone to crash during a routine training flight from Naval Air Station Patuxent River, south of Washington, D.C. CNN had one of the first reports, and local station WBOC has some footage of the crash site, so those are the two best resources for news right now. One thing the crash does immediately is give you an idea of what's quietly flying overhead here in the United States, other than traditional airplanes. The 44-foot-long RQ-4A flies at 400 mph at a ceiling of 65,000 feet, with a range of 11,730 miles according to Designation Systems. It carries no weapons, so the danger in a crash is just that it might have hit someone, not that a missile will explode. Fortunately, nobody got hurt this time.

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