US To Spend $58 Billion On Bombers In Next 10 Years: GAO Report

  • Our Bureau
  • 09:51 AM, August 4, 2015
  • 2440
US To Spend $58 Billion On Bombers In Next 10 Years: GAO Report
Boeing B-52 Stratofortress (USAF photo/Tech. Sgt. Robert Horstman)

The US government expenditure on strategic bombers is expected to reach $58 billion in the next ten years.

A Government Accountability Office (GAO) report released at the end of July projects the entire spending between development and manufacture of USAF’s new strategic bomber, Long-Range Strike Bomber (LRS-B) at $33.1 billion and modernizing two in-service platforms- B2 Spirit and B-52 Stratofortress for $24.4 billion.

The report also forecast $1.3 billion spend on new tail-kits for the B61-12 nuclear bomb, which was successfully flight tested in mid-July.

“The Air Force plans to maintain its long-range attack capabilities through a combination of sustainment and modernization of its bombers. The Air Force plans to acquire a new bomber in the mid-2020s, which it expects to perform conventional missions and nuclear deterrence. At the same time, it plans to modernize the B-2 and B-52 bombers to enable them to retain long-range strike capabilities through the 2030s,” the report said.

According to the report, the B-52 aircraft has an expected service life through at least 2040. The USAF plans to improve and modernize its avionics, communications and weapons upgrade. The US needs to create a new generation strategic bomber to increase the country's deterrence potential, former US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel during his farewell tour had said in January this year.

A GAO Congressional Research Service report last July had hinted plans for the new bomber and had said, that the plane could eventually be “optionally manned” and could be flown as a pilotless aircraft for some missions.

The USAF long-range bomber fleet also includes B-52 and B-1 bombers. Pentagon officials want to start replacing the existing models with a new long-range stealth plane by the mid 2020's. The B-2 bomber will be deployed by the mid-2040's.

Companies such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman are currently working to develop the new bomber.

Also Read

Raytheon Develops Low Cost Fiber Airframe For USAF Air Launched Decoy

July 21, 2015 @ 10:54 PM

USAF Tests Guided Nuclear Bomb Launch

July 10, 2015 @ 11:42 AM

Orbital ATK To Provide Common Munitions Test Support To USAF

July 3, 2015 @ 12:14 PM

USAF Math Skills On Display In B-3 Bomber Miscalculation

September 1, 2015 @ 04:12 PM
FEATURES/INTERVIEWS