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Top 5 best bombers in the world

PANAGYURISHTE, (BM) – There is no doubt that there are only two countries that are working hard on new bombers. These are Russia and the United States. All others are either customers or tenants of this type of military equipment. Of course, there are other countries that produce or develop in this field of military engineering, but they are significantly far behind the two most powerful forces.

That is why in our ranking today there are representatives of only these two countries. We arranged the bombers in the following order:

#5 – Rockwell B-1 Lancer, the U.S.

Boeing Has Been Awarded a $14 Billion Contract to Modify Weapons on B-1 and B-52 Bombers
Photo credit: Staff Sgt. Bennie J. Davis III

The Rockwell B-1 Lancer is the only aircraft in service with the United States Air Force with a variable swept wing. The bomber uses composite materials to reduce the effective scattering area. The front horizontal surfaces, the edges of the wing, stabilizer and air intakes, as well as the bomb bay doors are made of composites.

The joints of the airframe skin are sealed with a special tape, which is then covered with paint. According to the creators, the B-1 has unique characteristics of initial survival, surpassing the B-52 by 2-3 times according to some criteria. Rockwell B-1 Bomber The Lancer can reach speeds of 1328 km / h and carry 56 tons of bombs or missiles.

#4 – Tu-95MS, Russia

Top 5 best bombers in the world
Photo credit: Wikipedia

It’s old, slow, turboprop and very noisy. It can be detected by any long-range radar, but this does not bother the Tu-95MS at all – the aircraft is armed with Kh-55 cruise missiles with a nuclear warhead, which can hit targets at a distance of 3000 km (SM modification). Therefore, it is not necessary for the “Bear” to enter the enemy’s air defense zone.

Slow – only 830 km / h – Tu-95MS bomber has a high flight range (about 11 thousand km and a ceiling of 12 thousand meters). For 17 hours of flight, “Bear” consumes 96 tons of aviation kerosene.

Moreover, the Tu-95MS, with its frequent appearances at the NATO borders, are quite costly for the allies. The fact is that the margin of safety of the obsolete airframe “Bear” is simply huge, it will last for 20 years, but for the common NATO fighter F-16 this figure is 8000 hours, for the F-18 – 6000 hours.

#3 – Northrop B-2 Spirit, the U.S.

US Air Force B-2 Pilots, Maintainers and Weapons Loaders Will Be Trained by L3
Photo credit: U.S. Air Force/Staff Sgt. Bennie J. Davis III

The strategic stealth bomber Northrop B-2 Spirit is the most expensive aircraft in the history of military aviation. In 1997 prices, it was worth about $ 2 billion. The cruising speed of the stealth bomber is low – only 800 km / h, but it has a high flight range – 11 thousand km and a ceiling of 15 thousand meters.

The aircraft is capable of taking on board 16 B-61 atomic bombs, or 8 907 kg guided laser-guided bombs GBU-27 Paveway II, or 80 227 kg bombs.

#2 – B-52 Stratofortress, the U.S.

Week in Pictures: Sep 13-20
Photo credit: US Air Force

Strategic bombers B-52 “Stratofortress” can rightly be called veterans: the first 52 took off in 1952, and the last left the assembly line in 1963. The US Air Force plans to keep this aircraft in service until 2040.

The bomber is subsonic, its maximum speed is 960 km / h, its flight range is 16 700 km, and the ceiling is about 16 thousand meters. The B-52 “Stratofortress” can carry 27 tons of combat payload. The bomber was actively used during the last battles in Afghanistan and Iraq, where it successfully coped with combat missions.

#1 – Tu-160 Blackjack, Russia

The First Upgraded Tupolev-160M Bomber to Enter the Russian Armed Forces in 2021
Photo credit: TASS

The Tu-160 is the largest supersonic aircraft in the history of military aviation, an aircraft with variable wing geometry, and the most powerful and heaviest combat aircraft in the world. In terms of speed, it can compete with a fighter – 2300 km / h, it can carry up to 54 tons of bombs and missiles, with a maximum flight range of 13,950 km.

The Russian Air Force is armed with 16 such aircraft, which are gradually being modernized. At one time, these strongest aircraft were at the disposal of the Ukrainian Air Force, but they were destroyed at the initiative of Washington, and all stocks of X-55 cruise missiles with a nuclear warhead were also destroyed.

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