B-2’s Stealthy MOP-Up

The Air Force completed testing and integration of the Massive Ordnance Penetrator on the B-2 stealth bomber, stated Lt. Gen. James Kowalski, head of Air Force Global Strike Command, Wednesday. With the 30,000-pound MOP, the B-2 is “our nation’s only long-range anti-access penetrating strike platform capable of delivering nuclear and heavy conventional payloads,” said Kowalski during a National Defense University Foundation address in Washington, D.C. USAF began flight testing MOP on the B-2 after taking the lead last year from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, which had led efforts demonstrating the MOP on the B-52H. Kowalski also said AFGSC—together with B-2 prime contractor Northrop Grumman—has completed radar modernization of four B-2s this year, bringing the total number of B-2s with upgraded radar to 12, or 60 percent of the 20-aircraft fleet. The modernization improves radar maintainability along the way, explained Kowalski. The Air Force also is now working to upgrade the B-2’s defensive management system to allow the aircraft to “operate in anti-access and aerial-denial environments well into the future,” he said.