B-1B Lancer Bomber Review of Technical Specifications – Over the course of its high-flying life, Rockwell’s B-1 Lancer strategic bomber has gone from a spent product to a nuclear bomb to a conventional bomber.
B-1B Lancer Bomber Review of Technical Specifications
|Type||Rockwell B-1 Lancer|
|Year of development||1986|
|Development Status||Active, In-Service|
|Engine||Four General Electric F-101-GE-102 turbocharged afterburner engines, each with 30,780 pounds of thrust|
|Max Speed||724 Knot (833 mph)|
MilitaryEzyInfo.com | The U.S. Air Force. the B-1 was nicknamed “Bone” because of its “B-One” designation. Military aircraft rarely operate at full power, such as Rockwell’s B-1 “Lancer” heavy bomber.
First Look of B1
The U.S. Air Force modified the new bomber less than a year after it was contracted. Despite hundreds of requested changes, the aircraft was a good and promising product, a far cry from the bombers of the 1950s and 1960s.
The first B-1A was unveiled in October 1974 and made its first flight on December 23, 1974. Intensive flight tests followed, and it was confirmed that the B-1A met almost all of America’s requirements for a new bomber.
In the late 1970s, as the political climate in the U.S. changed, the B-1A program was scaled back in order to pursue the development of intercontinental ballistic and cruise missiles. Only three completed B-1As remain in service.
When the Carter administration came into power on June 30, 1977, the B-1A and GE engines were canceled, but this product may still be developed for limited future value.
B-1B Lancer Bomber Combat History
The B-1B has participated in combat operations in Iraq (Operation Desert Fox 1998), Kosovo (1999), Afghanistan (2001), and Iraq (2003). It was unable to participate in Operation Desert Storm (1991) due to the lack of additional conventional bombing capability at the time and other engine problems.
In the attack on Saddam Hussein’s forces, the B-52 replaced the B-1B as the conventional bomber.
During its active service, the B-1 served in Strategic Air Command, Air Combat Command, the National Guard, and the Air Force Flight Test Center.
Two B-1As are housed in the museum, and a series of eight or so B-1Bs were rescued from scrap as well.
The B-1Bs have lost their nuclear delivery capability, but the current B-1Bs may be modified to carry nuclear weapons if necessary.
Production of the B-1 aircraft
The Lancer was developed as a nuclear-powered high-speed bomber to replace Boeing’s B-52 “Stratofortress” heavy bomber, which had been in service with the US Air Force since 1955.
The North American XB-70 Valkyrie bomber, powered by Mach 3 engines, was initially developed as the main heavy bomber for the U.S. Air Force and Strategic Air Command (SAC) and as a successor to the original B-52, but due to changes in the global political situation … As a result, both technical and accidental problems led to the cancellation of this product.
The main factors that led to the demise of the HB-70 were the success of Soviet air defense systems (including radar and missile technology and manned interceptors such as Mikoyan-Gurevich’s MiG-25 Foxbat) and the need for a first-strike, radar-based, low-cost alternative to the manned bomber approach, ICBMs and It was the growing U.S. interest in cruise missiles.
The B-52 was a subsonic “heavy artillery” aircraft, while the F-111 operated at supersonic speeds and could carry a limited amount of bombs.
Requirements for the new bomber
After the XB-70 adventure was over, the USAF continued to design and develop a new generation of bombers throughout the 1960s. First, since manned bombers are still expected to outperform missiles in terms of accuracy today, development took place under the Advanced Manned Strategic Aircraft (AMSA) program.
With a myriad of shapes and types, including delta-wing, rotary-wing, and subsonic armor-piercing bombs, it was imperative to integrate the latest radar avoidance technology as much as possible, and to break away from the rigid design lines and features of the massive B-52.
The research period lasted from the early 1960s to the late 1910s, during which time the ideal shape of the new bomber emerged. It was to have a crew of four to accomplish the intended mission, variable wings for low altitude and high-speed flight, a large fuselage for mixed fire and armament (inboard), and (at least) Mach 2 performance.
It must also be able to take off and land in a short time and carry survivors and aircraft. Its payload includes a nuclear warhead/launcher to achieve one-third of the “nuclear triad” doctrine used by the US (nuclear missiles launched from air, land, and sea). Thus, one corner of the triangle can support the other to cover for Soviet failure after a first strike.
In March 1967, North American merged with Rockwell International to become Rockwell North America, Inc.
The B-1B is not a Stealth Aircraft
Despite its thin profile and RAM coating, the B-1B is not a stealth aircraft like the Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk or the Northrop B-2. It still relies on low altitude flight and speed to overcome enemy defenses.
To assist in this role, it has a rescue and relief evasive radar mode that can be used both on land and over water. This allows the aircraft to “hug” the terrain below and climb towards more difficult-to-track/move targets.
It is emphasized that no Lancer was shot down as an enemy target during the war, with the most casualties due to accidents and general combat friction.
The B-1B was also highly durable due to its cockpit arrangement and aerial refueling. It also set flight records, including climb times in three different weight classes.