Today the B-2 - though limited by available numbers - provides the United States with a lethal first-strike / first-kill capability unmatched throughout the world. [63] In 2014, the USAF outlined a series of upgrades including nuclear warfighting, a new integrated processing unit, the ability to carry cruise missiles, and threat warning improvements. [17] Northrop had prior experience developing the YB-35 and YB-49 flying wing aircraft. Development of the first such designs started in 1975 with "the Hopeless Diamond", a model Lockheed built to test the concept. [7][131], During the Iraq War, B-2s operated from Diego Garcia and an undisclosed "forward operating location". [4] The total program cost, which included development, engineering and testing, averaged $2.1 billion per aircraft in 1997. [121][122] In 2003, the B2SS program was managed by the Combat Support System Program Office at Eglin Air Force Base. T he B-2 Spirit is a four engine, two crew, military strategic stealth bomber built by Northrop Grumman since the late 1980s. ", "The Air Force Announced It's Upgrading The One Plane It Needs To Bomb Iran. In 1997, as Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee and National Security Committee, Congressman Ron Dellums (D-CA), a long-time opponent of the bomber, cited five independent studies and offered an amendment to that year's defense authorization bill to cap production of the bombers to the existing 21 aircraft; the amendment was narrowly defeated. By 1992, Republican President George H. W. Bush called for the cancellation of the B-2 and promised to cut military spending by 30% in the wake of the collapse of the Soviet Union. [citation needed] The B-2's (s/n 82-1066 / AV-1) first public flight was on 17 July 1989 from Palmdale to Edwards AFB. Engineers did everything in their power to make the B-2 more effective than previous bombers. Dawson, T.W.G., G.F. [30] By the early 1990s, the Soviet Union dissolved, effectively eliminating the Spirit's primary Cold War mission. and S.P. The B-2 Spirit bomber is a standout among military planes -- and also the world's most expensive at more than $2 billion each. [129], The B-2 saw service in Afghanistan, striking ground targets in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The F-117 used flat surfaces (faceting technique) for controlling radar returns as during its development (see Lockheed Have Blue) in the early 1970s, technology only allowed for the simulation of radar reflections on simple, flat surfaces; computing advances in the 1980s made it possible to simulate radar returns on more complex curved surfaces. [53] Changing the radar's frequency was required as the United States Department of Commerce had sold that radio spectrum to another operator. [14], The Advanced Technology Bomber (ATB) program began in 1979. Mar 31, 2019 - B-2 Spirit Cockpit B-2 Spirit Cockpit B-2 Spirit Cockpit B-2 Spirit Cockpit B-2 Spirit Cockpit ", Capaccio, Tony. Beck has yet to conduct a long-endurance flight in the B-2 Spirit, the stealth bomber produced by Northrop Grumman and introduced to the U.S. Air … ", USAF to Retire B-1, B-2 in Early 2030s as B-21 Comes On-Line. Capstone is a Joint Airborne/Air Transportability Training mission providing interservice training for the wartime application of airlift. [33], The program was the subject of public controversy for its cost to American taxpayers. [23] Unlike the Lockheed F-117 program, which was also a black project (the type of military project of which very few people knew even existed while it was being designed and developed) more people within the United States federal government knew about the B-2 and more information about the project was available. ", "B-2s return to flight after safety pause. [145] Spirit of Kansas had been operated by the 393rd Bomb Squadron, 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, and had logged 5,176 flight hours. The evaluation also noted that the Defensive Avionics suite had shortcomings with "pop-up threats". [100], Northrop had investigated several means of applying directional control that would infringe on the aircraft's radar profile as little as possible, eventually settling on a combination of split brake-rudders and differential thrust. In 2008, a B-2 was destroyed in a crash shortly after takeoff, though the crew ejected safely. The B-2 Spirit’s stealth needs and unique mission meant that the airframe and the engineering behind it had to go above and beyond. During the late 1980s and 1990s, Congress slashed plans to purchase 132 bombers to 21. The B-2 Spirit Stealth bomber.The B-2 Spirit aircraft is described as “deadly and effective’ yet at the same time it is upheld as an instrument of “humanitarian warfare”. "Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit". ", "US Air Force combat fleet's true operational costs revealed", "Key Senate Backer of Stealth Bomber Sees It in Jeopardy. [88] This is to be followed by the Long Range Standoff Weapon which may give the B-2 a standoff nuclear capability for the first time. In February 2010, another serious incident involving a B-2 occurred at Andersen Air Force Base. This viewing was heavily restricted, and guests were not allowed to see the rear of the B-2. [79][83] The B-2 features a sophisticated GPS-Aided Targeting System (GATS) that uses the aircraft's APQ-181 synthetic aperture radar to map out targets prior to deployment of GPS-aided bombs (GAMs), later superseded by the Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM). May 31, 2017 - This is the B2 Spirit Stealth Bomber's cockpit. It's where your interests connect you with your people. [7], By the mid-1970s, military aircraft designers had learned of a new method to avoid missiles and interceptors, known today as "stealth". The display airframe is marked to resemble Spirit of Ohio (S/N 82-1070), the B-2 used to test the design's ability to withstand extreme heat and cold. At the peak production period specified in 1989, the schedule called for spending US$7 billion to $8 billion per year in 1989 dollars, something Committee Chair Les Aspin (D-WI) said "won't fly financially". Afterwards, it became the B-2 Spirit. This page was last edited on 16 January 2021, at 17:55. [26] Cavanaugh was eventually sentenced to life in prison and released on parole in 2001. ", "US had planned air strike to level Osama's Abbottabad hideout: Americas, News - India Today", US flies stealth bombers over South Korea, U.S. flies B-2 stealth bombers to S. Korea in "extended deterrence mission" aimed at North, "B-2 bombers kill nearly 100 ISIS terrorists in Libya", "Air Force: Sensor moisture caused 1st B-2 crash. 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