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Air Force crewchiefs from the 28th Air Expeditionary Wing prepare to launch a B-1B Lancer bomber into combat over Afghanistan during Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. Crewchiefs are responsible for the maintenance, refueling, launching, preflight and post-flight inspections of their aircraft. Operation ENDURING FREEDOM is in support of the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT), fighting terrorism abroad, after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 at the New York World Trade Center and the Pentagon

Air Force crewchiefs from the 28th Air Expeditionary Wing prepare to launch a B-1B Lancer bomber into combat over Afghanistan during Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. Crewchiefs are responsible for the maintenance, refueling, launching, preflight and post-flight inspections of their aircraft. Operation ENDURING FREEDOM is in support of the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT), fighting terrorism abroad, after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 at the New York World Trade Center and the Pentagon

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description

Summary

The original finding aid described this photograph as:

Subject Operation/Series: ENDURING FREEDOM

Base: Diego Garcia

Country: British Indian Ocean Territory (IOT)

Scene Major Command Shown: 28th AEW

Scene Camera Operator: SSGT Shane Cuomo, USAF

Release Status: Released to Public
Combined Military Service Digital Photographic Files

B-1 Lancer is a supersonic variable-sweep wing, heavy bomber built by Rockwell and used by the United States Air Force. It is commonly called the "Bone" (from "B-One"). It is one of three strategic bombers in the U.S. Air Force fleet as of 2018, the other two being the B-2 Spirit and the B-52 Stratofortress. The B-1 was first envisioned in the 1960s as a platform that would combine the Mach 2 speed with the range and payload of the B-52. After a long series of studies, Rockwell International (now part of Boeing) won the design contest for what emerged as the B-1A. This version had a top speed of Mach 2.2 at high altitude and the capability of flying for long distances at Mach 0.85 at very low altitudes. The introduction of cruise missiles and early work on the stealth bombers led to the program being canceled in 1977. The program was restarted in 1981, largely as an interim measure due to delays in the B-2 stealth bomber program, with the B-2 eventually reaching initial operational capability in 1997. This led to a redesign as the B-1B, which differed from the B-1A by having a lower top speed at a high altitude of Mach 1.25, but improved low-altitude performance of Mach 0.96. The electronics were also extensively improved during the redesign, and the airframe was improved to allow takeoff with the maximum possible fuel and weapons load. The B-1B began deliveries in 1986 and formally entered service with Strategic Air Command (SAC) as a nuclear bomber in that same year. By 1988, all 100 aircraft had been delivered. Originally designed for nuclear capabilities, the B-1 switched to an exclusively conventional combat role in the mid-1990s.

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Date

19/11/2001
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Source

The U.S. National Archives
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