B-2 Spirit stealth bomber burnt down in 2010 brought back to operative status

The U.S. Air Force has recently announced that the 4 year repair process of the B-2 Spirit of Washington has been completed.

The plane burnt down back in February 2010 during a take-off from Andersen Air Force Base on Guam. A minor engine fire turned out to be disastrous for the airframe and all four powerplants of the stealth bomber.

The process took so long mainly due to the complicated structure of the bomber that is based on a composite airframe.

USAF did not publicize the estimated costs of the repair.

Both USAF engineers and Northrop Grumman professionals were involved in the process. The repair made the B-2 reachieve its full operational capability with the entire USAF force of stalth batwing planes back to 20 Spirit bombers out of 21 delivered (one was lost in an accident at Andersen AFB on Feb. 23, 2008).

It was on Dec. 17. last year that Northrop Grumman celebrated the 20th anniversary of the first B-2 delivery.

Image Credit: U.S. Air Force

Jacek Siminski for TheAviationist

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About Jacek Siminski
Standing contributor for TheAviationist. Aviation photojournalist. Co-Founder of DefensePhoto.com. Expert in linguistics, Cold War discourse, Cold War history and policy and media communications.


  1. Hmm…..wonder why the air force declined to tell us how much it cost? Um….um…..could it be because it cost GAZILLIONS?!? lol

      • Of course not, regarding the past at least. What’s done is done.

        But it would give the public some insight in how much value the DoD gives to a single stealth bomber, and whether they’ve gotten better at keeping expenditures in check yet. I certainly hope the people calling the shots regarding budgets (on the appropriate level) know.

  2. Funny they would say it “burnt down”. Last I saw it, the crew ejected and it was a fireball….

  3. fire ball is an under statement,ashes is more like it.how can one bring a plane back from the ashes beats me,after spending so much on r&d, they should have build more then 20 planes.

    • The picture you was the 2008 crash of Spirit of Kansas in Guam which was a total loss valued at US$1.4 billion. The above news is regarding Spirit of Washington which had an engine fire on ground in Guam in 2010. Since it was only a single engine fire, not all four engines Air Force and Northrop Grumman was able to repair back the aircraft.

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