On July 24, Admiral Wang Shichun of the US Air Force revealed that the most mysterious strategic project of the US Air Force, the B-21 Rangers stealth bomber, will fly for the first time in December 21st.
The U.S. Air Force will have more than 100 B-21 aircraft in the 2030s, replacing B-2 and B-1B bombers in the U.S. fleet.
B-21 Bombers have only a few imaginary sources: Northrop Grumman.com
The U.S. Air Force Journal website reported July 24 that Admiral Stephen Seve Wilson, deputy chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force, said at an event of the Air Force Association on July 24 that the development of the B-21 Rangers stealth bomber was progressing well and would fly for the first time in December 21.
Admiral Stephen Seve Wilson, former commander of the Air Forces Global Strike Command? Tuyuan: U.S. Air Force
The B-21 is the code name of the next generation of US strategic bombers and is part of the modernization of US nuclear delivery. The U.S. Air Force has a high degree of confidentiality about this strategic weapon. In terms of technical details, the U.S. military only mentions the bombers long range and low detectability, and only publishes some basic conceptual maps.
Wilson said that he had seen B-21 under development in Northrop Grummans Melbourne, Florida facility, and that the B-21 project was progressing well and moving in the right direction. Referring to when the mysterious bomber first flew, Wilson said that he downloaded a countdown software specifically on his mobile phone, which showed that there were 863 days to go before the B-21 first flight, which meant that the B-21 would fly first in December 21st.
It is worth mentioning that the US bomber forces had just celebrated the first B-2 flight for 30 years before the news was released. The three bombers currently serving in the United States, B-1B, B-2 and B-52, have reached the end of their life. How to replace the existing fleet structure with B-21 has become a headache for the U.S. Air Force.
Los Angeles Times Image Source: Los Angeles Times on the Day of B-2 First Flight in July 1989
Last year, the Air Force released the The Force WeNeed report, which can be seen as the U.S. Air Forces demand for power after the 1920s. The U.S. Air Force said in its report that it also needed seven bomber squadrons. But how many B-21 to replace B-2 and B-1B has not been decided by the U.S. military and the U.S. government.
The only certainty is that the B-52 will be in service until the 1940s. The U.S. Air Force has begun to modernize the B-52 with new engines and radar.
Wilson also talked about the future of the U.S. Air Force, he said, the general consensus of the U.S. Air Force is that we do not have enough long-range strike capability, but the Air Force has not yet decided the right fleet structure. The U.S. Air Force now has two points of view: the top level of the Air Force hopes to retain only the B-52 and B-21 beyond the 2030s, but the U.S. Air Forces Global Strike Command demands that the B-2 and B-1B be extended. In any case, Wilson said, we cant have four bombers at the same time.
B-52H Map Source currently deployed in the Persian Gulf: U.S. Navy
Wilson said the first B-21 would also be a usable asset, but he did not expect the B-21 to have initial operational capability until the mid-2020s. On the B-21 procurement issue, Wilson revealed that the Air Force expects to have at least 100 B-21 aircraft in the 1930s, and the cost of each aircraft is expected to be around $638 million.
Wilson revealed that because the U.S. Air Force has no consensus on bomber formation, neither this year nor next year will the U.S. Air Force formulate a future bomber budget plan.
Last year, the U.S. Air Force identified several B-21 initial deployment bases, Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma, to maintain and operate B-21, and Edwards Air Force Base in California to test and evaluate advanced long-range attack bombers.
History Photo: YF-23 and B-2 in the test will also be tested at Edwards Air Force Base in the future.
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