The future US Long Range Strike Bomber (LRS-B) was officialy designated B-21 in a statement made by US Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James on Friday 26 February. On the same occasion, a computer rendering of the new design was unveiled, looking very similar to the B-2 Stealth bomber and disappointingly not revealing much more than that.
According to James, the new bomber is a key element in the future US defense strategy. It should add ‘unheard of capabilities’ to the US long range strike arsenal. The Pentagon says it will need 80 to 100 new longe range bombers to replace B-1 Lancers and B-2 Stealth bombers.
Northrop Grumman las October was announced the winning contractor for the B-21 (formerly LRS-B) program. The company also designed and built the B-2. Lockheed Martin and Boeing contested the decision, but a court recently ruled that the selection of Northron Grumman upholds. On Friday 26 February, both Lockheed Martin and Boeing said they will take no further legal action.
An actual name for the Northrop Grumman B-21 will be chosen in a selection process that is open to suggestions from US airmen. The winning name is to be presented this fall.
© 2016 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest