DRAMATIC photos show the world’s most secretive warplane — which uses the call-sign “death” — coming in to land.
The nuclear capable United States Air Force B-2 stealth bombers were returning to the RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire after taking part in war games in the highly strategic nation of Iceland.
Plane spotters standing near the base’s perimeter at sunset yesterday to witness the moment three stealth bombers roared just 60ft over their heads.
The state-of-the-art warplanes, which can evade radar, have been in the UK after crossing the Atlantic to take part in a European training mission.
The aircraft were photographed by Steve King, 37, at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire, when they returned from a training exercise in Iceland.
He perched on a hill at the start of the runway, to catch them from underneath when they came into land.
The most expensive and secretive planes to ever be made, the B-2 bombers are worth £1.6bn BILLION each.
Steve, a bank office worker, from Swindon, Wilts., said: “They come down pretty low and are pretty loud.
“I thought I would opt for a different approach by getting the other spotters in the photo.”
SHOW OF US STRENGTH
The B-2 pilots and support staff are from the 509th Bomb Wing at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri.
They are here for a short deployment to show American strength to Moscow and to support NATO and its partners in Europe, it has been reported.
RAF Fairford has long been an important strategic base for American forces.
During the last B-2 deployment the planes were involved in bombing raids in the Middle East.
The planes on show at the Gloucestershire airbase
THREE Northrop-Grumman B-2 Spirits are currently in Gloucestershire.
The planes used the call-sign DEATH on arrival – a traditional call-sign used by the unit.
The three currently at the base are:
- 89-0168 “Spirit of New York”
- 89-0129 “Spirit of Georgia”
- 82-1071 “Spirit of Mississippi”
MOST READ IN NEWS
The stealth bombers are the most expensive military aircraft ever made – costing £1bn when they were introduced.
And engineering development and production costs totalled £1.64bn for each of the 21 aircraft built between 1987 and 2000.
It comes after the United States Air Force deployed the B-2 Spirit stealth bombers to RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire.
The nuclear-capable, batwinged warplane can drop as many as 80 independently guided weapons on a single mission.
It is also capable of delivering a single block-buster bomb known as a Massive Ordnance Perpetrator on underground missile factories.
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