Is Stealth bomber ready or in production?

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Is Stealth bomber ready or in production?
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There is confusing news about Northrop Grumman’s B-21 Raider stealth bomber. It is ready according to some news and still under production according to others. The aircraft is not complete, and it is still in production. The service has no plans to retire its ageing B-1Bs until deliveries of the Raider begin, scheduled for some time in the mid-2020s, at the earliest.

Darlene Costello, the Air Force’s Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics said during a House Armed Services Committee hearing that the first two B-21s have now been completed at Plant 42 in Palmdale, California. The service soon after corrected the announcement as two aircraft in production.

The Air Force now expects the rollout of the aircraft in early 2022. It would then make its first flight in the middle of the same year.

Is Stealth bomber ready or in production?

Frank Kendall, President Joe Biden’s the next Secretary of the Air Force nominee, recently outlined the minimum required for the service. The US Air Force wants to acquire at least 145 B-21 Raiders, estimated to cost in excess of $90 billion. Kendall, says that “is a reasonable number, at this point.” Before that, the Air Force had only said it anticipated building at least 100 B-21s.

Is Stealth bomber ready or in production?

In its recent budget request for the 2022 Fiscal Year, the Air Force asked for $2.873 billion for continued work on the B-21, adding an extra $30 million compared to the 2021 Fiscal Year request, which it says is needed “to prepare for initial production” of the bombers.

The Air Force currently has 158 bombers, with 62 B-1 Lancer bombers, 20 B-2 Spirit bombers, and 76 B-52H Stratofortress bombers. The B-21 will replace the B-1 and B-2, while the B-52H will fly on through at least the 2040s, if not into the 2050s.

Is Stealth bomber ready or in production?

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