Northrop Grumman and the US Air Force will unveil the B-21 Raider stealth bomber for the first time in December.
The company announced yesterday that during the first week of December, the Bomber will be unveiled at its Palmdale, California facility in an invitation-only event.
“The B-21 is the most advanced military aircraft ever built and is the product of pioneering innovation and technological excellence,” said Doug Young, industry vice president and general manager, Northrop Grumman Aeronautics Systems. . “The Raider showcases the dedication and skill of the thousands of people who work every day to deliver this aircraft.”
Since the contract award in 2015, Northrop Grumman has assembled a national team to design, test and build the world’s most advanced attack aircraft.
The B-21 is a product of Northrop Grumman’s digital engineering practices and advanced manufacturing techniques, along with revolutionary stealth technology.
“Northrop Grumman is proud of its partnership with the U.S. Air Force as we deliver the B-21 Raider, a sixth-generation aircraft optimized for operations in highly contested environments,” said Tom Jones, vice president and president. from Northrop Grumman Aeronautics Systems. .
Six B-21 test aircraft are in various stages of final assembly at Palmdale.
Northrop Grumman and the US Air Force have confirmed that the B-21’s first flight is scheduled for 2023. The actual timing of the first flight will be based on ground test results.
The first B-21 test article completed the first and most critical load calibration test in May. The test is one of three major conditions the plane will undergo in this phase of ground testing as it progresses to first flight, which was recently announced for next year.
In July, US Senator Mike Rounds confirmed the program was still on schedule after a visit to the plane’s production site in Palmdale, California.
“Although much of the information I received during my visit is classified, I am pleased to report that the B-21 is on time and on budget,” Rounds said on Twitter. “The public can expect the B-21 to be revealed later this year.”
Meanwhile, earlier this year, Northrop Grumman was awarded a $108 million B-21 Raider contract by the US Air Force for advance supply to support the stealth bomber program.
Advance procurement funds directly support the acquisition of long-lead items needed to build the first batch of production B-21 aircraft.