B-21 Raider: New US stealth bomber costs 550 million dollars each

The US unveils a new long-range stealth bomber for the first time in over 30 years. The B-21 “Raider” can deliver nuclear and conventional weapons over many thousands of kilometers to the target area.

So far there is nothing more than this official rendering graphic of the new Super Bomber. ©the U.S. Air Force

The well-known stealth bomber B-2 gets a successor: The B-21 “Raider” from US manufacturer Northrop Grumman. The US Air Force has notified it along with manufacturers Northrop Grumman will unveil the new stealth bomber in the first week of December 2022 at Northrop Grumman’s Palmdale, California facility. The first examples have been in production for some time and testing will continue even after the official launch. But so far the public has not been able to catch a glimpse of the new, spectacular long-range bomber. So that will change in early December.

It is already clear: the long-distance bomber B-21 will be a flying wing just like the B-2 and will certainly reduce the radar cross-section significantly compared to the B-2. In other words, the B-21 will be even more difficult to spot enemy radar than the B-2.

You don’t see such a complex bomber every day, the last comparable presentation was the B-2 more than 30 years ago. A copy of the new bomber probably costs 550 million dollars. The Air Force wants to buy around 100 of them.

These three strategic bombers will replace the B-21 Raider

The B-21 Raider is not only intended to gradually replace the comparatively modern B-2 (which also comes from Northrop Grumman), but also the very old B-52 Stratofortress, a long-range bomber from the early days of the Cold War. The third strategic bomber currently in service with the US Air Force, the B-1 Lancer, is also scheduled to be replaced by the B-21.

The new B-21 will thus become the backbone of the US bomber fleet. For conventional and nuclear weapon systems, the new aircraft can carry a variety of different weapons.

However, it will be the middle of this decade before the US Air Force actually puts the first examples of the B-21 into operation.


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