Northrop Grumman has completed a review of weapon systems software that will replace older programmes on the US Air Force’s fleet of B-2 bombers.

The software will better control the B-2’s weapons delivery system and allow new weapons to be integrated into the aircraft, Dave Mazur, Northrop’s vice president and B-2 programme manager, tells Flightglobal.

The project, which the USAF calls its Flexible Strike programme, seeks to replace multiple 1980s-era weapons software programmes with a single, new software programme, says Mazur.

“We are jumping from 1980s technology to current-day processors,” he says.

The software is called an “operational flight programme” and communicates with equipment that holds and releases weapons, says Northrop. The company has now completed the first phase of the programme – the preliminary design review phase.

The second phase will involve flight testing the new software in the aircraft, says Northrop.

The project comes on the heels of other recent B-2 electronics upgrades, including the addition of ultra high frequency satellite communication equipment, faster processors, a fibre-optic network and increased onboard storage, Northrop says.


US Air Force