U.S. Air Force

The United State Air Force B-21 Raider bomber and operational squadron will be making Ellsworth Air Force Base its new how. This will be the first of three bases nationwide to host the B-21 bomber in its fleet.

U.S. Senators John Thune and Mike Rounds said Wednesday the announcement means hundreds of new airmen and their families will come to the base and that will spur construction in the area. The Air Force says the planes are expected to arrive by the middle of next year.

The Rapid City Journal reports the senators say Ellsworth will need to construct hangars, training areas, and facilities to store the thermonuclear weapons. Thune says that will have a positive impact on the local economy.

The B-21 is expected to replace the fleets of B-1 and B-2 bombers over the next ten years. The long-range strike bomber intended to operate both conventional and nuclear roles.

Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri and Dyess Air Force Base in Texas will also get B-21 bombers later as they become available.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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