USAF's New Stealth Bomber "Strides Toward Flight Readiness" After Successful Load Test

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by Tyler Durden
Saturday, May 28, 2022 - 02:40 AM

Northrop Grumman tweeted Wednesday that its new stealth bomber "made strides toward flight readiness with a successful loads calibration test." 

A press release from Northrop Grumman described how the B-21 Raider "completed the first — and most critical — loads calibration test." The first of three ground test before the aircraft takes to the skies in 2023. 

The next two tests will be engine testing and low-speed and high-speed taxi tests. Air Force Magazine noted the B-21 was initially supposed to take flight in the second half of this year, though Northrop Grumman has pushed that back to 2023 (cause of delays weren't cited). 

"The B-21 test aircraft is the most production-representative aircraft, both structurally and in its mission systems, at this point in a program, that I've observed in my career," Randy Walden, director of the Department of the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office and program executive officer of the B-21 Raider program, recently said. 

Northrop Grumman said the stealth bomber would be unveiled later this year.