TechBombers from the US in Europe. It is not known what they will be doing here

Bombers from the US in Europe. It is not known what they will be doing here

B-1B Bomber.
B-1B Bomber.
Images source: © Wikimedia Commons

5:35 PM EDT, October 17, 2023

As reported by the DefenceBlog portal, citing a statement by the United States Air Force, four B-1B long-range strategic bombers arrived in the United Kingdom. The machines arrived at RAF Fairford base near Bristol.

The B-1B Lancer bombers under the command of the 9th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron have arrived in Europe as part of a mission aimed at increasing global readiness for defense against potential threats. However, DefenceBlog notes that the "specific mission or objectives of the bomber deployment have not been publicly revealed due to operational security." It is not ruled out, however, that the presence of the aircraft is related to NATO exercises "Steadfast Noon".

It's unclear exactly what tasks the American machines deployed in the UK will be undertaking, and where they might appear. Bomber flights (provided the transponders are switched on) can be tracked, among other things, in the Flightradar24 app. The planes have been given special call signs for the duration of the mission (HOWLER21-HOWLER24).

Some of the loudest airplanes in the world

Produced by the American company Rockwell International, the B-1B Lancer bombers are often referred to as "bones" (a term derived from the phonetic name B-1, or B-one). The aircraft design originated in the 1960s, when the USA was working on creating an advanced manned strategic aircraft. Its role was to monitor Soviet airspace and transport nuclear weapons.

After many years of work, the first flight of the "bones" took place on December 23, 1974 Eastern Time. However, the flight concerned the B-1A version, which ultimately did not go into production, but served as a research platform for the development of the target B-1B. The Lancer bombers only reached full combat readiness on October 1, 1986 Eastern Time., and the last produced copy entered service two years later, in 1988.

The B-1B construction is unique due to its variable wing geometry. They can be set at various predefined angles (15, 25, 45, 55, 67.7 degrees) and this serves to ensure maximum range while simultaneously achieving maximum supersonic speeds by reducing air resistance.

"Bones" are considered one of the loudest aircraft in the world, as they generate a continuous noise of up to 140 dB during takeoff. Four General Electric F101-GE-102 engines, each producing about 65 kN (136 kN with afterburners) of thrust, power the aircraft. This allows the B-1B to reach speeds of 1.25 Ma (827 mph) and ascend to an altitude of up to 59,055 ft. The "bones" have a range of 12,000 km, meaning that the bomber, equipped with nearly 90,000 kg of fuel (approximately 198,416 lbs), can transport weapons (in three bomb bays and six weapon nodes) on intercontinental flights.

See also