The US Air Force is likely to award a contract to develop the next generation bomber on Tuesday.
Northrop Grumman and a team of Lockheed Martin and Boeing are competing for the contract, Bloomberg reported Monday.
The high-priced contract will include cost-plus type engineering, manufacturing and development phase that includes incentives for controlling costs and a fixed-price-incentive contract for the first 20 of the planned 100 aircraft, Air Force officials were quoted as saying by the news website.
The Pentagon cleared the final hurdle of the process on Friday. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter is expected to make the announcement after the financial markets close on Tuesday.
The Long-Range Strike Bomber will be one of the Pentagon’s biggest weapons systems of the next decade. Joining the B-2 bomber, with its radar-evading “flying wing” design, the new plane will be the eventual successor to the 1970s-era B-1 and the Eisenhower-era B-52 when it enters service in the mid-2020s.