Alfred Thayer Mahan’s book, “The Influence of Sea Power Upon History,” led America to have the single-most dominant naval force in the world. I guess once America conquered the seas, they decided to conquer the air as well.
May I just say that we have come a long way from the Wright brothers’ first flight. The B-2 Spirit is a bomber plane designed to be invisible to enemy radar. This “stealth” allows the plane to approach enemy targets without being seen, and without being damaged. Now, I’m not going to get into the science of things (if I did I would be working for Northrop Grumman because only they know the secrets) but this aircraft is a technological milestone in avionics. Yet, this aircraft is more than two decades old. I believe that the general public will never know the full capability of the US military. This aircraft was kept secret for years before it was deemed suitable for military production. Just think about what projects are currently in development that the general public might never get to learn about. Thinking historically, the present day and age, the 21st century, is characterized by unprecedented leaps in technological advancement. The B-2 bomber is just one example of how technology has affected every single aspect of modern life. One astounding feat that the B-2 Spirit Bomber has accomplished is a radar cross section of 1 square meter. Well, what does that mean? Well, take a human for example. Beam a radar detection system at a human and you will get a cross section of 1 square meter. The radar has detected that one square meter of mass is positioned where the human was standing. Beam radar detection at a B-2 Spirit Bomber weighing 158,000 pounds with a wingspan of 172 feet and the radar will detect 1 square meter of mass where the B-2 bomber was located.
Is that not majestic? Maybe I am just enamored with the aesthetics of advanced military avionics, but to me, the B-2 Bomber is astonishing. Its tail-less body and magnificent wings provide an unseen before image, something intimidating and intriguing.