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Air Force Sets Dec. 2 Unveiling Date for Northrop B-21 Bomber; Gen. Charles Brown Quoted

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The U.S. Air Force has scheduled the event to unveil the B-21 Raider bomber aircraft for Dec. 2 at a Palmdale, California, manufacturing site operated by prime contractor Northrop Grumman.

A team of company and service personnel will continue testing efforts after the Raider’s public debut to assess weapon system performance, the Air Force said Thursday.

The branch awarded the Long Range Strike Bomber contract in October 2015 to replace the B-1 and B-2 bombers as its flagship bomber fleet. Northrop’s team members on the B-21 program are BAE Systems, Collins Aerospace, GKN Aerospace, Janicki Industries, Pratt & Whitney and Spirit Aerosystems.

“We last introduced a new bomber over 30 years ago. As we look to the threats posed by our pacing challenge; we must continue to rapidly modernize,” said Gen. Charles Brown Jr., chief of staff at USAF.

Staying true to its seven Operational Imperatives, the branch is banking on the aircraft’s long-range strike capability, advanced communications, open architecture and sophisticated sensors, weapons and supporting systems.