• Monday, January 20, 2020

US Air Force eyes more B-21 orders as it finishes preliminary design review

Discussion in 'Air Warfare' started by F-22Raptor, Apr 21, 2018.

  1. F-22Raptor

    F-22Raptor SENIOR MEMBER

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    Northrop Grumman has finished preliminary design review of the B-21 Raider stealth bomber.

    The heavy bomber is now moving towards a critical design review, says Lt Gen Arnold Bunch, the air force's military deputy for acquisition during an 18 April Senate Armed Services hearing. Critical design review is the next step before assembly of the first aircraft can begin.

    Northrop Grumman has also delivered the first set of software for the B-21 programme, said Bunch.

    “We are making good progress,” he said. “I am comfortable today with were we are at, the progress that Northrop Grumman is making on the programme.”

    The USAF has released little detail on the schedule for the B-21’s development and delivery, but said the aircraft will be fielded in the mid-2020s. The service plans to buy 100 B-21s, enough to retire by 2040 its fleet of 20 Northrop B-2 Spirit stealth bombers and 62 Boeing B-1B Lancer bombers.

    Citing military secrets Bunch declined to say much more about the B-21 programme. However, his USAF colleague, Lt Gen Jerry Harris, deputy chief of staff for strategic plans and requirements, appeared to indicate that the service may ask for funding to acquire dozens of additional B-21 Raiders.

    “We would like to fix the nine squadrons (of bombers) we have right now to give them more airplanes per squadron and then continue to grow to somewhere in the neighborhood of 14 or 16 squadrons that are ready for the mission,” he said.

    Because the B-21 Raider is the only bomber in development at this time it would likely be a leading candidate to fulfill that vision of a larger bomber force.

    https://www.flightglobal.com/news/a...orders-as-b-21-finishes-preliminary-d-447860/
     
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  2. Azeri440

    Azeri440 SENIOR MEMBER

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    100 B-21 + 75 B-52s? holy shit

    wonder which aircraft will replace B-52
     
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  3. khanmubashir

    khanmubashir FULL MEMBER

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    So b2 and b1 r gonna be retired by 2040 but not much older b52???
     
  4. Broccoli

    Broccoli FULL MEMBER

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    B-52 can haul massive weapon payload and it's relatively cheap to operate.
    https://www.airforce-technology.com/projects/b52/#3
     
  5. Oldman1

    Oldman1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    B-52 has always been planned to be used for many more decades. Even try to give it new engines to increase the range the fuel efficiency.

    I would like to see a future conventional bomber like 777-300 be used as a bomber. Carry more payloads and fly further than the B-52.
     
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  6. Shabi1

    Shabi1 FULL MEMBER

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    Puzzling how they plan to retire both B-1B and B-2 with a single aircraft. B-1 is supersonic, whereas the B-2 was designed for greater distance and stealth. Don't know how they can find a middle ground on the capabilities.