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B-2 Spirit (USA, 1989)

B-2 Spirit (USA, 1989)

The B-2 Spirit heavy stealth bomber was deployed in the Balkan war, Afghanistan and Iraq.

History

Keywords

B–2, Spirit, stealth, bomber, nehézbombázó, USA, Cold War, radar, aircraft, nuclear, weapon, radar wave, mechanics, aviation, technology, military technology

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Narration

The code name ”Spirit” was given to an aircraft developed for the US Air Force. It received the name due to its stealth technology, while the letter B in its official designation refers to its capacity as a bomber. The prototype for the B-2 Spirit strategic bomber first took off in 1989.

Designed in total secrecy, the aircraft is around 21 meters (69 feet) in length and 5 meters (16.4 feet) in height. It has a wingspan of over 52 meters (170.6 feet) and a wing surface of about 460 m² (4,951 ft²). Four jet engines with 77 kN (17,310 lbf) of thrust each propel this gargantuan 152-tonne bird forward. The aircraft can reach a maximum speed of 760 km/h (472.2 mph) and a maximum altitude of 15,000 meters (49,210 feet). It has a remarkable range of 10,400 km (6,462 mi).

But all these feats are surpassed by the two most important attributes of the B-2 Spirit. The bomb bays can carry a frighteningly large cargo of bombs; around 23 tonnes. The other important aspect is that it is basically a flying wing, a plane that has no fuselage or tail. Even the jet engines are concealed. The B-2 is covered with a special material that absorbs most radar signals, while the rest are scattered by the special shape of the aircraft.

We can conclude that it is nearly undetectable by most surveillance equipment. The ”stealth” designation and the ”Spirit” code name are both well earned.

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