B-21 Bomber Passes Design Milestone

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The B-21 Raider long-range stealth bomber, under development by Northrop Grumman for the U.S. Air Force, has passed its preliminary design review, according to a recent report in DefenseNews. “It's making great progress, and we’re pleased with the way it’s headed,” said Gen. Stephen Wilson, the Air Force’s vice chief of staff, at a recent House Armed Services Committee hearing. Northrop Grumman has been working on the project since October 2015. The company is expected to deliver at least 100 of the airplanes at a cost of about $500 million apiece, with first deliveries in about 10 years. Details of the airplane’s design and development are secret.

According to Northrop Grumman, “The B-21 Raider will be capable of penetrating the toughest defenses to deliver precision strikes anywhere in the world. We are providing America’s warfighters with an advanced aircraft offering a unique combination of range, payload, and survivability.” The B-21 will replace the two oldest bombers serving in the U.S. Air Force: the B-52 Stratofortress and the B-1B Lancer.

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