New Bomber Revealed But It Needs A Name

  • Feb 26, 2016 8:23am GMT

Northrup Grumman said in their Super Bowl ad "Just wait until you see what's next" and this week we found out. Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James revealed the first rendering of the new Long Range Strike Bomber and announced the Air Force will be taking suggestions from Airmen to help decide on a name for it.

In her speech at the Air Force Association's Air Warfare Symposium today the secretary said, "So we have an image, we have a designation, but what we don't yet have, we don't yet have a name and this is where I'm challenging and I'm calling on every airman today ... to give us your best suggestions for a name for the B-21, America's newest bomber. The Airman who submits the selected name will help me announce it at the (Air Force Association) conference this fall.”

The artist rendering above is based on the initial design concept. Tim Paynter CEO Northrup Grumman stressed the B-21 bomber's importance to the nation's future in a statement saying, "Northrop Grumman is proud to serve as the prime contractor for the B-21 Bomber, in partnership with the U.S. Air Force, to deliver a capability that is vital to our national security.”

The Air Force awarded the contract for B-21 engineering, manufacturing and development to Northrop on Oct. 27. The service plans to field the new bomber in the mid-2020s.

An Air Force statement said, "The B-21 will allow the Air Force to operate in tomorrow's high end threat environment, and give the Air Force the flexibility and the capability to launch from the continental United States and deliver airstrikes on any location in the world." The reason the B-21 shares a resemblance to the B-2 was explained as being based on a set of requirements that allows the use of "existing and mature technology."

The Air Force allotted about $12.1 billion in research, development, test and evaluation funds for LRS-B over the next five years, according to the service’s fiscal 2017 budget request.

What do you think it should be called?

Photos & video below: USAF / Northrup Grumman