B-21 Rollout

MIflyer

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They unveiled the B-21 at Palmdale this evening. Somewhere, in a place both incredibly far and very close, Jack Northrop is smiling.

Screenshot 2022-12-02 at 22-46-17 B21 Raider Rollout Livestream - YouTube.png
 

CAC Woomera

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Nov 23, 2022
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Interesting new aircraft, I'm curious to see what'll come of it and any issues that'll arise, a bit like the F-35 because I recall there being controversy but I forgot what exactly about. Think money issues?
 

FLYBOYJ

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Interesting new aircraft, I'm curious to see what'll come of it and any issues that'll arise, a bit like the F-35 because I recall there being controversy but I forgot what exactly about. Think money issues?
The F-35's development and rollout was highly publicized and the media scrutinized the program from the beginning. The B-21 was developed "under the radar" (no pun intended) so it may be awhile before this aircraft becomes the media's new whipping boy.
 

GrauGeist

Generalfeldmarschall zur Luftschiff Abteilung
The F-35's development and rollout was highly publicized and the media scrutinized the program from the beginning. The B-21 was developed "under the radar" (no pun intended) so it may be awhile before this aircraft becomes the media's new whipping boy.
Like the B-21, the B-2 sort of "appeared" in front of the media and it took a while for them to conjure up a few "issues". I believe it was the usual "too expensive" thing.

But it soon proved it's worth, so there really wasn't anything for them to whine about.
 

FLYBOYJ

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Like the B-21, the B-2 sort of "appeared" in front of the media and it took a while for them to conjure up a few "issues". I believe it was the usual "too expensive" thing.

But it soon proved it's worth, so there really wasn't anything for them to whine about.
Additionally the F-35 was imbedded as a failure by the military despite almost 900 being built. Keep telling a lie and eventually it will be accepted as truth!
 

MIflyer

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I think that both the F-22 and the F-35 were competitive procurements that tried to do a bit too much with one airplane, rather like the F-111. In that situation there will always be critics in the form of the people who lost the bid and with so many different missions it will inevitably fall at least a bit short of perfection in certain areas. Both the B-2 and B-21 have the huge advantage of much more focused missions; they will not try to build a carrier capable or fighter version of the B-21.

I recall passing Townsend Bombing Range in Georgia one day several years back and seeing not one but two B-2's making multiple low altitude passes at the range. This sounds a bit strange, since I did not think CAS was one of their missions, but I don't guess there is any reason they could not do that.
 

FLYBOYJ

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I think that both the F-22 and the F-35 were competitive procurements that tried to do a bit too much with one airplane, rather like the F-111. In that situation there will always be critics in the form of the people who lost the bid and with so many different missions it will inevitably fall at least a bit short of perfection in certain areas. Both the B-2 and B-21 have the huge advantage of much more focused missions; they will not try to build a carrier capable or fighter version of the B-21.
Agree to a point - the F-22 began life with one mission, the USAF started adding on additional requirements. A similar thing happened to the F-35 except those "add-ons" happened when the thing was being developed adding to it's cost. You really can't compare the multi-role attempt to what was produced during the F-111 days, look at the advancements in technology and the miniaturization of LRUs and other systems let alone the ability to place a supercomputer in a combat aircraft. What was considered a dismal failure in the attempt to produce a true multi-role aircraft during the 1960s and 70s is now a reality.
 

Thumpalumpacus

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I recall passing Townsend Bombing Range in Georgia one day several years back and seeing not one but two B-2's making multiple low altitude passes at the range. This sounds a bit strange, since I did not think CAS was one of their missions, but I don't guess there is any reason they could not do that.

Especially with JDAMs, such exposure isn't really necessary, is it?
 

MIflyer

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Agree to a point - the F-22 began life with one mission, the USAF started adding on additional requirements
Washington DC and the aerospace industry in general LOVE big programs. Note that while the F-111A and F-111B combined two very different sets of requirements into two almost identical aircraft, - and failed - for the F-15 the Air Force went the other way, entirely and built it as ONLY an air-to-air fighter. Then they added the F-15E strike capabilities later. Thus teh progarmn did not get 'effed up. Nonetheless, there are always powerful incentives in the procurement process to keep incorporating more features ad making the program bigger.

When the US Army adopted the Blazer as a commercial-based vehicle the Airborne spoke up and said theirs had to capable of being airdropped. Someone was very courageous and told them to forget about that idea and go buy HUMVEEs. This is all too unusual; ending up with everyone saddled with needlessly expensive and complex airdroppable vehicles that they do not need is more the norm.

The worst example of this of all time is the Space Shuttle, which was the equivalent of replacing the F-5 with fighter version of the C-5.
 

FLYBOYJ

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Washington DC and the aerospace industry in general LOVE big programs. Note that while the F-111A and F-111B combined two very different sets of requirements into two almost identical aircraft, - and failed - for the F-15 the Air Force went the other way, entirely and built it as ONLY an air-to-air fighter. Then they added the F-15E strike capabilities later. Thus teh progarmn did not get 'effed up. Nonetheless, there are always powerful incentives in the procurement process to keep incorporating more features ad making the program bigger.
Exactly but this is never mentioned to the general public. You also have many O-5s bucking for their eagle who want brownie points for coming up with something innovative. I've seen this at the USAFA. I think as we speak they are putting glass cockpits in 50 year old T-41s (The last ones flying with the USAF and T-51s (150HP C-150s). All this in the name of safety and to enhance the mission.
 

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