This photo shows the entire arsenal of a B-52 Strartofortress.
The standard loadout for this plane includes eight AGM-84 Harpoon missiles, four AGM-142 Raptor missiles, 51 500lb bombs, 30 1,000lb bombs, 20 AGM-86C conventional air-launched cruise missiles (CALCM), 12 joint stand-off weapons (JSOW), 12 joint direct-attack munitions (JDAM) and 16 wind-corrected munitions dispensers (WCMD), according to Airforce-technology.com.
In 1955, when the first Boeing B-52 Stratofortress became operational, nobody would have imagined that the plane would likely remain in service for nearly 100 years. Today, that’s exactly what the US Air Force has in mind for this iconic aircraft.
Around 750 of the bombers were produced. Although the latest model of the plane came off the assembly line in 1962, the Air Force intends to keep flying these planes until 2040. The B-52 is a multi-purpose heavy lifter of the skies, that has carried drones, space shuttle components, cruise missiles, and even nuclear bombs.
In the 60’s, the B-52 was known for travelling far and fast on a single fuel load. At one point, it cut the round-the-world speed record in half. In January of 1962, the B-52 flew from Japan to Spain, a flight that broke 11 speed and distance records.
Today, most B-52’s have been gutted and upgraded, with pretty much only the original air frame remaining unchanged. The monstrous plane can carry a payload of up to 70,000, including up to 20 air-launched cruise missiles.
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