OKLAHOMA CITY, May 28 (UPI) -- Plans for Northrop Grumman to upgrade weapons management software for B-2 bombers are moving forward following successful completion of a Critical Design Review.
The planned upgrade comes under the U.S. Air Force's Flexible Strike Phase 1 program.
"The Flexible Strike software upgrade lays the foundation for future system enhancements, including the ability to carry multiple weapon types," said Col. Robert Strasser, U.S. Air Force, B-2 system program manager and chief of the B-2 division of the Air Force's Fighters and Bombers Directorate. "This 'mixed loads' capability will ensure maximum strategic nuclear and conventional strike capability."
The Air Force awarded Northrop Grumman a three-year, $102 million contract in 2014 for the Flexible Strike Phase 1 program to replace several mission-specific OFPs, or operational flight program software, with a single OFP that can manage all of the B-2's weapons carriage devices.
"The Flexible Strike software upgrade program will give the B-2 a simpler, more powerful way to manage communications with its weapon systems," said Dave Mazur, vice president and B-2 program manager, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems. "It will also reduce B-2 maintenance costs, increase mission flexibility and increase aircraft reliability."
Additional details of Northrop Grumman's work on the contract were not disclosed.