The inaugural test flight of the state-of-the-art B-21 Raider, an advanced stealth bomber of the Air Force, has now reportedly been completed.
The test flight, which consists of taxiing, flying operations, and ground testing, was conducted on Friday in Palmdale, California, where Northrop Grumman has been developing the aircraft.
The Air Force claims that once fully operational, the Raider will be a long-range, highly survivable, penetrating-strike stealth bomber capable of transporting both conventional and nuclear munitions.
They have a goal of producing 100 B-21 Raiders, but are currently only producing six demonstration aircraft.
Significant precautions have been taken by both the Air Force and Northrop Grumman to protect the first American bomber aircraft in over three decades from adversaries, including the Chinese Communist Party, which the Pentagon regards as its “pacing challenge.”
The stealth bomber derives its nomenclature from the Doolittle Raiders, an American Army Air Force unit renowned for its covert assault on Japan throughout the course of World War II.
The designation B-21 signifies the inaugural bomber of the twenty-first century, which this Raider possesses.