Originally Posted by TacCovert4
Absolutely, which is why I proposed the B-17II concept. If we don't have air supremacy, any large slow bomber isn't going to do well. The B-52 was primarily designed to carry a nuclear or conventional (mostly nuke) iron bomb load at long range into Soviet Russia. For its time of inception, it was a decently fast bomber for its range and bomb load.
Now, what it's used for is carrying a few PGMs, but primarily it's used as a truck for cruise missiles, to bring them into theater from far away bases. Even with upgrades, it's still a gas hog. As has been said a lot, better engines make the redundancy not as necessary. So 4 turbofans would be a lot more efficient than the 8 engines (can't remember if they're fans or jets) on the BUFF.
A B-17II comes from a proven basic design with a full support structure. What it would change is the fuselage....modified to carry a moderate load of bombs/PGMs, and a large load of missiles....cruise missiles, anti-ship missiles, or any other medium-large missile that can be fired from the air. Such a design could even be modified to replace the P-3 aircraft and E-3 Aircraft with a common airframe, engines, and basic controls/logistics.
The H's still in service have an early generation low bypass turbofan.
The earlier models, now retired, were powered by turbojets.
"It's like shooting rats in a barrel."
"You'll be in a barrel if you don't watch out for the fighters!"
"Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease."
— Sergei(son of Igor) Sikorsky, 'AOPA Pilot' magazine February 2003.
Last edited by At ease; 02 May 13 at 20:02..
Reason: To clarify difference between early/later model powerplants.