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Pentagon Drops Cost Estimate For B-21 Raider

Airplane Will Cost Nearly $40 Million Less Per Copy

The cost estimate for the new B-21 Raider long range bomber has been cut by some $39 million each, according to the Pentagon's office of Cost Estimate and Program Analysis (CAPE). The new cost estimate is now $511 million per airplane.

Breaking Defense reports that Randall Walden, director of the Air Force’s Rapid Capabilities Office, announced the cost reduction estimate during a panel at the Air Force Association's 2016 annual conference.

Lt. Gen. James Holmes, deputy chief of strategic plans and requirements, said that the Air Force will likely look at the acquisition of a deep-penetrating fighter to provide cover for the bomber on missions against heavily-defended targets deep inside a country.

It has not yet been determined which aircraft will be replaced as the B-21 comes online, according to Gen. Robin Rand, head of Air Force Global Strike Command. He said that a "bomber vector" study, which he described as "very elaborate", is currently underway.

(USAF image)



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