Northrop Grumman has won the contract to build the next-generation Long Range Strike Bomber (LRS-B) for the USAF. This contract will shape the industry and add new life to the world’s sixth-largest defense company.
Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Air Force leadership announced that Northrop beat out the team of Boeing and Lockheed Martin competing for the contract. The contract is expected to top $55 billion over the life of the program. It is being considered the largest military aircraft contract since Lockheed Martin won the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF, F35) more than 10 years ago.
The new plane will replace the Air Force’s aging B-52s and B-1s. It will enable the Air Force to operate well in high-end threat environment.
Northrop Grumman also happens to be the manufacturer of the B-2 stealth bomber.
The Air Force did not tell the value of the contract announced on Tuesday. Details about the plane itself remain unknown. That means we cannot say anything about the size, weight, payload, shape, and other stealth capabilities of the plane.