The United States Air Force is going to be pleased as Air Force Maj. Gen. Jason R. Armagost, Director of Strategic Plans, Programs, and Requirements at Air Force Global Strike Command (AFGSC) confirmed that a new B-21 Raider heavy bomber is now being built along with five other B-21 Raiders in various stages of production at Northrop Grumman’s Air Force Plant 41 located in Palmdale, California.
This report comes after Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall had confirmed that 5 B-21 heavy bombers were already in production last 2021, also located in Northrop Grumman’s Air Force Plant 42. The construction of the 6th bomber only began a few weeks ago.
Armagost, who was speaking at this year’s Nuclear Deterrence Summit held at Arlington, Virginia, updated the recent developments with the program, stating that the new heavy bomber’s aircraft fuel system has been successfully tested in Northrop Grumman’s state-of-the-art digital environment even though it hasn’t been actually flown yet. The director also stated that it was heavily utilizing digital systems and open mission systems architecture software technologies that are also being used in other weaponry and aircraft produced for the US military.
“The B-21, going into the future, is going to be our penetrating, get inside the anti-access, area of denial, dual-capable aircraft,” he said. Different types of technologies were also explored so that they could be integrated ahead of the aircraft’s first flight.