WASHINGTON, (BM) – The B-1B Lancer supersonic strategic bomber of the United States with a variable sweep wing can be equipped with 31 hypersonic missiles. This statement was voiced by US Air Force General Timothy Ray, learned BulgarianMilitary.com.
According to the source, hypersonic weapons are planned to be placed in the internal compartments of the bomber, as well as on external suspensions.
The remaining B-1B Lancer bombers will be equipped with these weapons after 17 such aircraft are decommissioned.
The military spokesman noted that in this way the B-1B Lancer will be able to unload the strategic bombers B-52 Stratofortress. The source added that B-1B could also be involved in hypersonic weapon tests.
Earlier it was reported the start of testing American military laser weapons outside the continental United States.
Nicknamed “The Bone,” the B-1B Lancer is a long-range, multi-mission, supersonic conventional bomber, which has served the United States Air Force since 1985.
The aircraft is on track to continue flying, at current demanding operations tempo, out to 2040 and beyond, and Boeing partners with the Air Force to keep the B-1 mission ready. Originally designed for nuclear capabilities, the B-1 switched to an exclusively conventional combat role in the mid-1990s.
In 1999, during Operation Allied Force, six B-1s flew 2 percent of the strike missions, yet dropped 20 percent of the ordnance, and during Operation Enduring Freedom the B-1 flew on 2 percent of the sorties while dropping over 40 percent of the precision weapons.
The B-1 has been nearly continuously deployed in combat operations over Afghanistan and Iraq since 2001.
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