B-2 Spirit Looks More Alien on the Ground Than It Does in the Air

No matter how advanced the technology behind them or the place of origin, military airplanes of today retain the shape we all have been conditioned to recognize as belonging to such a contraption: a long, narrow body, with a canopy on top, and wings to either side to provide lift, and support for weapons and maybe engines.
B-2 Spirit on the runway in Australia 24 photos
Photo: USAF/Tech. Sgt. Dylan Nuckolls
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There is one airplane out there though that doesn’t fit that general description: the B-2 Spirit. The Northrop stealth bomber, now a solid member of the American Bomber Trifecta alongside the B-1B Lancer and B-52 Stratofortress, is not conventional in any way, down to the flying wing shape it adopted.

Designed this way as a means for it to be able to better hide its radar signature (and, we suspect, a bit because its makers thought it’d look very cool), the B-2 looks more like an alien spacecraft flying inside our atmosphere than a plane made by humans to kill other humans.

If you think the plane looks alien when seen while in the sky, just take a look at the main picture of this piece, and you’ll become instantly convinced the same happens when it’s on the ground – if not even more so.

This particular bomber is deployed with the 509th Bomb Wing out of Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri, while the land beneath its wheels belongs to the Royal Australian Air Force Base Amberley in Australia.

The plane as seen in this recently released pic shows the Spirit taxiing in preparation for a Bomber Task Force mission in the Indo-Pacific region back in July.

Despite its alien look, the B-2 is as Earth-made as they get. It’s powered by four General Electric engines good for 17,300 pounds each, can fly at high subsonic speeds, and can carry both conventional and nuclear weapons, about 40,000 pounds (18,144 kg) of the stuff.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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