After the B-2, it is the first new American bomber in more than three decades. The B-21 is capable of carrying both conventional and nuclear munitions.
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In addition to Northrop Grumman, another 400 companies from 40 American states participated in the development and production of the top-secret aircraft. The US Air Force intends to purchase at least a hundred B-21s.
According to the original estimates from 2010, according to Reuters, each plane was supposed to cost 550 million dollars (now 12.7 billion crowns), after accounting for inflation, the price for one machine could now be up to 750 million dollars (17.3 billion crowns). Officially, the price of the bomber was not published.
According to AP, the aircraft will be produced in unmanned and piloted versions. The US Air Force wants the B-21 to replace the older B-1 and B-2 bombers, which, according to the Pentagon, cost over $60,000 per hour to operate (about 1.38 million crowns per hour).
Northrop calls the B-21 a sixth-generation aircraft for its ability to communicate with other aircraft and easily integrate “future weapons” into its systems, writes Reuters. Thanks to the more durable surface material, the B-21 is also expected to require fewer repairs and therefore have lower operating costs, according to the manufacturers. There are now six of these machines in various stages of production.
Strategic bombers, presumably with a similar futuristic design in the shape of a flying stingray, are also being developed by China and Russia. Both powers are trying to keep up with each other and the United States in military technology. The new Russian bomber is to be the Tupolev PAK DA. China is developing a machine called the H-20.
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