The B-2 Spirit is a multi-role bomber capable of delivering both
conventional and nuclear munitions. ts
low-observable, or "stealth," characteristics give it
the unique ability to penetrate an enemy's most sophisticated
defenses and threaten its most valued, and heavily defended,
targets. Its capability to penetrate air defenses and threaten
effective retaliation provide a strong, effective deterrent and
combat force well into the 21st century.A
dramatic leap forward in technology, the bomber represents a major
milestone in the U.S. bomber modernization program. The B-2 brings
massive firepower to bear, in a short time, anywhere on the globe
through previously impenetrable defenses. Along with the
B-52 and B-1B, the B-2 provides the penetrating flexibility and
effectiveness inherent in manned bombers.
The first B-2 was
publicly displayed on Nov. 22, 1988, when it was rolled out of
its hangar at Air Force Plant 42, Palmdale, Calif. Its first
flight was July 17, 1989. The B-2 Combined Test Force, Air Force
Flight Test Center, Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., is
responsible for flight testing the engineering, manufacturing
and development aircraft as they are produced. Whiteman AFB,
Mo., is the B-2's only operational base. The first aircraft,
Spirit of Missouri, was delivered Dec. 17, 1993. Depot
maintenance responsibility for the B-2 is performed by Air Force
contractor support and is managed at the Oklahoma City Air
Logistics Center at Tinker AFB, Okla.
contractor, responsible for overall system design and
integration, is Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems Sector.
Boeing Military Airplanes Co., Hughes Radar Systems Group,
General Electric Aircraft Engine Group and Vought Aircraft
Industries, Inc., are key members of the aircraft contractor
team. Another major contractor, responsible for aircrew training
devices (weapon system trainer and mission trainer) is Hughes
Training Inc. (HTI) - Link Division, formerly known as CAE -
Link Flight Simulation Corp. Northrop Grumman and its major
subcontractor HTI, are responsible for developing and
integrating all aircrew and maintenance training programs.
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13.25" wingspan x 5.25" long.
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