B-2 Spirit stealth bomber enters the benefield anechoic facility for the first time

PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED PHOTOS SHOW B-2 SPIRIT STEALTH BOMBER ENTERING THE BENEFIELD ANECHOIC FACILITY FOR THE FIRST TIME

By Dario Leone
Nov 25 2017
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The B-2 entered the BAF to undergo environmental control systems checks

Released earlier this month and taken in November 2016 at Edwards Air Force Base (AFB) the interesting photos in this post show a B-2 Spirit stealth bomber being backed into the (Benefield Anechoic Facility) BAF to undergo environmental control systems checks.

Noteworthy the B-2 stealth bomber entered the BAF for the very first time during this testing.

As reported by Kenji Thuloweit, 412th Test Wing Public Affairs, in his article BAF team readying for stealth bomber testing, the BAF team spent a year preparing for and installing new equipment for the B-2’s maiden entrance into the anechoic chamber. The BAF plans to host the B-2 for future electronic warfare testing.

B-2 Spirit stealth bomber enters the benefield anechoic facility for the first time
A B-2 Spirit bomber is backed into the Benefield Anechoic Facility Nov. 28, 2016.

The BAF, operated by the 772nd Test Squadron, is the largest anechoic chamber in the world and can fit almost any airplane inside. It provides a signal-free space so electronic warfare tests can be conducted without radio frequency interference from the outside world.

Completed in July 1989, the BAF continuously conducts electronic warfare testing on all types of aircraft, from U.S. Air Force (USAF) aircraft to allied nations aircraft. The chamber is filled with polyurethane and polyethylene pyramids — radar absorbing material — designed to stop reflections of electromagnetic waves. The size of the pyramids, which are painted dark blue or black, varies depending on the particular frequency and test procedure being conducted. Aircraft systems can be tested and verified that they work properly prior to actual flight test.

B-2 Spirit stealth bomber enters the benefield anechoic facility for the first time
Photo credit: Christian Turner and Christopher Okula / U.S. Air Force

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Dario Leone

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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