December 4, 2011, one of the US’s top secret drones inexplicably landed safely in Iran. This is the drone that encompasses, up to that time, all our latest stealth technology. It included the shape of it, the materials it is made of, and the special coating on the outside. As if this wasn’t enough of a gift to Iran, they also got all the technology built into it; the most advanced in the world. One could say technology that reached years into the future because it would take the rest of the world that long to catch up. Not just catch up, the rest of the world didn’t have a clue as to what could be done, thus the saying, they didn’t know what they didn’t know.
Land safely in Iran? Did we want that? No. The drone mysteriously malfunctioned and lost contact with its pilots (somewhere at a distant location). It then mysteriously failed to do take actions built into it in such a case. It was programmed to autonomously make it’s way back to its secret base. And then it mysteriously failed to take the next action that was programmed into it; that was to self destruct. The only action it took was to safely land its self. This was the last thing wanted.
Upon realizing that the drone wasn’t going to return and that literally, every preprogrammed course of action failed to be carried out, our intelligence people started planning. Iran didn’t even know it was in their country yet. The most desirable action was for a SEAL team to be activated and allowed to retrieve it. I say allowed because SEALs live for moments like these. Next was for a 2,000-pound smart bomb be dropped on it. The last was to sit on our hands and do nothing. This was the course President Obama chose.
There is no doubt that Iran teamed up with scientist from China and Russa to try to reverse engineer it. Iran would allow them access if they shared their discoveries with them. In fact, Iran probably was able to negotiate a tremendous pay off in addition to any intelligence.
As far as reverse engineering the electronics, it would be very difficult. Almost all the circuits would be made using integrated circuits. That is where millions of transistors and such are “printed” in minuscule circuits and contained in a solid wafer. There would be hundreds of those incorporated throughout the drone. To try to shave off portions of the wafer in a way that the circuits inside could be deciphered would be very difficult. But then, you can never underestimate your foes.
It will take years to learn just how much damage this course did to