The Silent Menace

B-2+Spirit.++Photo+Source%3A++U.S.+DOD.

B-2 Spirit. Photo Source: U.S. DOD.

The B2 bomber is one of the most dangerous bombers in the world. It also appears that it’s a menace to society, because the design of it makes it look like an alien spaceship.  It uses stealth technology to go past enemy defenses without being detected. It also has conventional weapons like the MK 82 bomb and Joint Direction Attack Munitions (JDAM). It’s has a top speed is 628 mph, and costs $2 Billion. The bomber has been in use since 1997 and produced since 1987.

B2 bombers flying in formation.  Photo Source:   https://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/national-security/2018/january/a-message-to-north-korea-us-sends-3-b-2-stealth-bombers-to-guam

STEALTH

B2 flying Photo Source:  https://sites.google.com/site/jkhcaircraftusafbombers/home/usaf—bombers—modern—post-wwii—i-of-16—b-2

The way the stealth system functions is that the bomber doesn’t make much noise. The engines are buried inside of the bomber so barely any noise comes out. It also barely makes any radio signature while flying and it’s painted with anti -reflection paint, so seeing it with the naked eye is difficult. It’s also plated with RAM (Radar Absorbent Materials) to even further make it stealthier.

 

DEVELOPMENT

During its development the goal for the bomber was to not emit a significant amount of radio signature and thermal emissions. Since it’s first flight in 1989 it has been one of the first of its kind in engineering using stealth technology. The project was kept very secret with the workers having a high access clearance and undergoing extensive background checks. The parts for the bomber were from front companies which are laid out and sourced from various suppliers like an intelligence agency to avoid suspicion. The first b2 bomber was built in a factory owned by Ford in Pico Rivera in California. During the development an engineer named Thomas Cavanaugh tried to sell information about the B2 to the Soviet Union. When he was caught he got life in prison, but in 2001 he gained parole.

Related Stories

https://www.businessinsider.com/b-2-spirit-stealth-bomber-what-is-feared-2018-2

https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/g1080/we-fly-a-b-2-stealth-bomber/

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/air-force-its-getting-new-stealth-bomber-b-2-remains-lethal-1-reason-118531