The Air Force has taken delivery of the first operational B-2 stealth bomber fitted with a newly modernized radar that includes advanced electronically scanned arrays. In a release April 28, prime contractor Northrop Grumman said the handover occurred March 17 at Whiteman AFB, Mo., home of the B-2 fleet. “The new radar enables the jet to perform some of the nation’s most significant missions, while giving it a technological foundation for enhanced capabilities in the future,” said Dave Mazur, Northrop’s vice president of long-range strike. This updated B-2 is the first of several getting the new Raytheon-built radar during the system development and demonstration phase of the Air Force’s B-2 radar modernization program, which seeks to equip the entire 20-aircraft B-2 fleet with the new AESA system by 2011. Last December the Air Force let a $468 million production contract for Northrop to build the remaining sets of new arrays.
One trailblazer will commemorate another, as former Air Force test pilot, astronaut candidate, and sculptor Ed Dwight has been selected to create a statue of the Air Force’s first Black four-star general, the General Daniel "Chappie" James, Jr. Memorial Foundation announced Sept. 17.