As the Pentagon prepares to announce the winner of one of its most significant contracts since the F-35 contract award in 2001 — the Long Range Strike Bomber — it faces a myriad of challenges and very high expectations. A Boeing-Lockheed Martin team is competing against Northrop Grumman, builder of the B-2 bomber, for the $25 billion prize.… Keep reading →
ST. LOUIS: It was the question of the day: Mr. Secretary, can you elaborate on the Long Range Strike Bomber? The Pentagon plans to buy 80 to 100 of the $550 million-a-copy bomber — most details of which remain classified. A Boeing employee asked the question after a short speech by Defense Secretary Ash Carter, here to… Keep reading →
WASHINGTON: America’s next war plane may look much more like a stealthy long-range bomber than a sleek, fast and maneuverable fighter. That’s the conclusion of a wide-ranging study by the respected Center for Budgetary and Strategic Assessments. Breaking Defense obtained a copy of the report from a source not affiliated with CSBA. Here’s the study’s main finding:… Keep reading →
The Air Force very quietly released a Request for Proposal (RFP) this summer for the new Long Range Strike Bomber (LRS-B). With a purported fly away cost of $550 million per aircraft — but with estimates up to $810 million — the LRS-B will be one of the largest acquisition programs in history with broad… Keep reading →
Winslow Wheeler, one of the Washington’s most respected defense budget experts, has penned a detailed analysis of how much the Pentagon pays for maintenance and operations to keep its planes in the air. Below, we offer a very condensed version of his report. The Editor.
Early in a weapon program’s history, there is virtually always a promise that it will be cheaper to operate than the aircraft it is to replace. That rarely turns out to be the case. This is not
new; just as the Air Force promised the F-22 would be cheaper (by 35 percent) to operate than the F-15, it also promised back in the 1970s that the F-15 would be cheaper to operate than the F-4 it replaced. The higher O&S costs are rarely divulged — or are even the subject of inquiry. When questions are asked, actual costs are masked by several layers of fog. What is available on scarce occasion is incomplete, and some of it is misleading. Keep reading →