Bomber Flexibility Study: A Progress Report

Publication Date: January 1994

Publisher: RAND Corporation

Author(s): Gary Liberson; Joel Kvitky; David R. Frelinger; Charles J. Neerdaels

Research Area: Military and defense

Type: Brief


The Bomber Flexibility Study focuses on long-term improvements that will make the bomber force an integral element of conventional military strategy. In this documented briefing, the authors identify four missions for bombers: suppressing infrastructure, halting invading armies, defeating enemy air defenses, and attacking critical mobile targets. They match bombers (B-52, B-1, B-2) to missions and evaluate what technical capabilities the bombers need to fulfill those missions. For example, the B-52 requires few modifications because its primary mission--suppressing infrastructure--closely resembles its original mission. The more flexible B-2, however, might be adapted to a variety of missions and therefore may require a number of new technologies. In the future, these technologies will be subjected to detailed cost and effectiveness analyses.