Airplanes Planes Used By Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

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List of planes used by Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). Plane models are listed alphabetically and include additional information about each individual Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) aircrafts. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) uses, or at some point has used, these planes. This list answers the questions "what kind of aircraft does Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) use?" and "what plane am I flying on Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)?" List includes photos of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) planes when available, to help clear up what airplanes Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) flies. List includes A-12 OXCART, Convair Kingfish and more. (5 items)
Lockheed A-12 is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Planes Used By Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
Photo: Freebase/GNU Free Documentation License
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Lockheed A-12

The Lockheed A-12 was a reconnaissance aircraft built for the Central Intelligence Agency by Lockheed's famed Skunk Works, based on the designs of Clarence "Kelly" Johnson. The aircraft was designated A-12, the 12th in a series of internal design efforts with the A referring to "Archangel", the internal code name of the aircraft. It competed in the CIA's Oxcart program against the Convair Kingfish proposal in 1959, and won for a variety of reasons. The A-12's specifications were slightly better than those of the Kingfish, and its projected cost was significantly less. Convair's design had the smaller radar cross-section, however, and CIA's representatives initially favored it for that ...more on Wikipedia

Type: High-altitude reconnaissance aircraft

Manufacturer: Lockheed Corporation

Aurora is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Planes Used By Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
Photo: Freebase/GNU Free Documentation License
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Aurora was a rumored mid-1980s American reconnaissance aircraft. There is no substantial evidence that it was ever built or flown and it has been termed a myth. The U.S. government has consistently denied such an aircraft was ever built. Aviation and space reference site Aerospaceweb.org concluded "The evidence supporting the Aurora is circumstantial or pure conjecture, there is little reason to contradict the government's position." Others come to different conclusions. In 2006, veteran black project watcher and aviation writer Bill Sweetman said, "Does Aurora exist? Years of pursuit have led me to believe that, yes, Aurora is most likely in active development, spurred on by recent advances ...more on Wikipedia

Type: Reconnaissance aircraft

Manufacturer: Skunk Works

Maiden Flight: Jan 01 1989

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Convair Kingfish is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Planes Used By Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
Photo: Freebase/CC-BY
3

Convair Kingfish

The Convair Kingfish reconnaissance aircraft design was the ultimate result of a series of proposals designed at Convair as a replacement for the Lockheed U-2. Kingfish competed with the Lockheed A-12 for the Project Oxcart mission, and lost out to that design in 1959. ...more on Wikipedia

Manufacturer: Convair

Lockheed D-21 is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Planes Used By Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
Photo: Freebase/Public domain

The Lockheed D-21 was an American Mach 3+ reconnaissance drone. The D-21 was initially designed to be launched from the back of its M-21 carrier aircraft, a variant of the Lockheed A-12 aircraft. Development began in October 1962. Originally known by the Lockheed designation Q-12, the drone was intended for reconnaissance missions deep in enemy airspace. The D-21 was designed to carry a single high-resolution photographic camera over a preprogrammed path, then release the camera module into the air for retrieval, after which the drone would self-destruct. Following a fatal accident when launched from an M-21, the D-21 was modified to be launched from a Boeing B-52 Stratofortress. Only four ...more on Wikipedia

Type: Surveillance drone

Manufacturer: Lockheed Corporation

Maiden Flight: Dec 22 1964

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