US B-21 Raider Stealth Bomber Launched, Capable of Carrying Nuclear Bombs

US B-21 Raider Stealth Bomber Launched, Capable of Carrying Nuclear Bombs
US B-21 Raider Stealth Bomber Launched, Capable of Carrying Nuclear Bombs

International Military - The United States Air Force officially introduces Northrop Grumman's B-21 Raider bomber. The B-21 Raider is the US Air Force's first new, most advanced bomber built in the last 30 years. The B-21 Raider Bomber will be unveiled at a ceremony at Northrop Grumman's facility in Palmdale, California on Friday December 2, 2022 at 8:00 p.m. local time.

Read Also: Amid Fears of World War III, US Launches B-21 Raider Nuclear Stealth Bomber

The B-21 Raider bomber is described by Northrop Grumman as the world's first sixth-generation aircraft. This is a term that describes the level of technological sophistication compared to other aircraft.

While the definition of a sixth-generation aircraft is still being refined, the B-21 bomber remains ahead of other aircraft in digital capabilities and operates with or without a crew. The B-21 Raider bomber is capable of deploying both nuclear and conventional weapons.

Read Also: 8 Facts About the B-21 Raider, US's Most Advanced Stealth Bomber Substitute for the B-1 and B-2

Much is still unknown about the capabilities of the B-21 bomber, but some details were released to the public ahead of its launch. According to a Northrop Grumman fact sheet released on November 29, 2022, the B-21 bomber will feature "advanced network capabilities", which will be able to coordinate and communicate with other assets including satellites. This includes communications with ground stations and other aircraft, even including long-range unmanned "wingman drones" specially designed for the B-21 bomber.

The most revolutionary feature of the B-21 Raider is probably its stealth capabilities. Stealth technology is one of the most sensitive and classified in the US military arsenal. So not much is known about the exact stealth system the B-21 Raider bomber will have.

Much of the sophistication of the B-21 comes in the form of software used both on the plane itself and in the manufacturing process. Its makers describe it as a "digital bombardier" in that much of its design and build is done using a software-based "digital twin" to help reduce production costs.

In addition, the B-21 Raider bomber will feature an open software architecture that will enable the seamless integration of future enhanced technologies and capabilities. The B-21 Raider Bomber was named after the brave April 1942 raid on Japan led by Lieutenant Colonel James "Jimmy" Doolittle. This attack helped turn the tide of the Pacific battle of allied forces during the Second World War.

Northrop Grumman currently has six B-21 bombers in various stages of assembly and testing at its Palmdale plant. The US Air Force estimates that each nuclear-capable B-21 Raider bomber will cost approximately $692 million to procure.

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