AFP
New Engine & Modernization to  B-52: $11,9 Billion

New Engine & Modernization to B-52: $11,9 Billion December 27, 2017

The US Air Force allocated a budget for its plans to modernize the iconic bomber of the Cold War era, B-52 Stratofortress. The B-52 performed its first flight on April 15th, 1952. B-52H model, the latest version of the aircraft, will benefit from the program. First, the engine which the 76 Boeing B-52H aircraft in the US Air Force inventory will be fitted with will be decided on. Instead of the 8 Pratt & Whitney TF33 turbofan engines providing the necessary power to the aircraft, 608 new turbofan engines will arrive. This change will be the most important element of the $11,9 billion budget. With this change, the fuel cost is expected to decrease by 20 to 40 percent. The manufacturer Pratt & Whitney's offer regarding engine replacement and reducing the number of the engines by half was also rejected.

In addition to the engine, CONCERT (Combat Network Communications Technology) communications systems developed with a cost of $500 million will be installed to the aircraft. Under SWING (Smart Weapons Integration Next Generation) program, future integration and the use of next-generation small intelligent bombs, developed for $150 million,  will be provided. A new generation radar will be on board. This will be carried out within the framework of the Strategic Radar Replacement Program. Installing a jammer to the aircraft in the framework of electronic warfare is also being considered. But the most important modernization of the plane will be the renewal of 55-year engines. P & W developed the turbojet engine JT3D (using the name of Air Force TF33) as the first turbofan engine of the company. The company produced more than 8 thousand of these engines. The turbofan provides 50 percent more thrust than the turbojet engine during flight. It brings 25 percent more climbing power to this plane. The aircraft also benefits from 20 percent increase in the cruising speed.

In the US, a total of 102 B-52Hs entered the inventory, but 76 are flying today.

New Engine & Modernization to  B-52: $11,9 Billion

Share:
Issue 82

RELATED NEWS