The B-52 Stratofortress long range heavy bomber has the USAF's workhorse since 1955. The B-52 is a truly massive and powerful aircraft. It has eight powerful engines and can haul up to 70,000 lbs. of mixed ordnance. This historic aircraft has served in almost every military action since Vietnam. The most amazing part about this bomber is the fact that it has been updated and upgraded to meet modern battlefield requirements as time has gone by. In fact, the USAF plans on using this workhorse untill 2040. That is an 85 year life span for a military aircraft! It just goes to show that the joke among the B-52 pilots about picking up the crew from the last B-2 bomber could be a reality.
The B-52 can carry a wide variety of ordnance. It can carry traditional "dumb" bombs, nuclear, or precision guided weapons. The plane has even been modified with hard points on the wings, which actually added payload to the B-52's capabilities. It can carry anything from mines, bombs, air-launched cruise missiles, Harpoon anti-ship missiles, and Have Nap missiles. The Stratofortress carries many new electronics and sensors to improve its mission capabilities. It is equiped with forward looking infrared (FLIR) and high resolution television sensors to enhance its targeting and low level flight systems. The B-52 has and will continue to serve and protect this nation well.
|Function:||Long range, heavy, Bomber|
|Power Plant:||8 P&W TF33-P3/103 Turbofans each w/ 17,000 lbs of thrust|
|Length:||159 ft. 6 in.|
|Height:||40 ft. 8 in.|
|Weight:||185,000 (empty), 488,000 (max)|
|Armament:||70,000 Lbs. of mixed ordnance|
|Inventory:||85 total (active), 9 (reserve)|
|Unit Cost:||53.4 million (1998 dollars)|
|Deployment Date:||Feb. 1955|