Men Behind Famous Spy Planes Give Out Talks


The Atomic Testing Museum and the UNLV might be exactly where you have to be if you find Area 51, Groom Lake, spy planes and CIA interesting and very much intriguing.

Both institutions are hosting activities that would feature the men behind the creation of famous spy planes such as U-2, SR-71 and A-12. They will all speak to the public about the declassified factors of the United States’ black projects in Area 51 that gave the country an advantage during the Cold War.

The activities will start at 9 in the morning at the Atomic Testing Museum, 755 Flamingo Road. Peter Merlin, Roadrunners Internationale historian, will discuss the background of Groom Dry Lake bed’s private construction, located 90 miles northwest of Las Vegas. A slot in the session hall would cost an enthusiast $20. The program entitled “Area 51: The Secret Projects” will open the countdown to the March introduction on Area 51?s first ever museum exhibit.

At 10 am, “The Blackbird Engine Challenge” will follow the discussion. “Autopilot and Guidance Systems for the A-12″ will start by 11 am and by noon, Tony Bevacqua and Frank Murray will talk about “Flying the U-2 and A-12″. Some other discussions will include “Rainbow to Gusto: Stealth and the Design of the Lockheed Blackbird,” at 1 in the afternoon; Merlin’s talk on the history of Area 51 at 2 pm; and the “MiGs of Area 51″ by retired CIA radar expert T.D. Barnes at 3 pm.

Barnes and the other speakers will then proceed to UNLV to support a free program at 7:30 in the evening in the Science and Engineering Building Auditorium. CIA historian David Robarge will deliver “Archangel: CIA’s Supersonic A-12 Reconnaissance Aircraft”.

The whole program is part of the Dean’s Conversation Series, reinforced by industry leaders Tronox and Timet Inc., the Howard R. Hughes College of Engineering and the History Department of UNLV.

Local aerospace leader Roger Andersen who mainly worked as the CIA Air force support pilot and operations officer, will be available to answer questions from the audience.

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