Hours before the Boeing announcement, Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James officially designated the LRS-B program the B-21 bomber and unveiled an artists concept of the plane. The Air Force said in a statement it choose the B-21 designation as recognition that LRS-B is the first bomber of the 21st century.
Following the announcement, James told reporters she had received an “encouraging” phone call from Boeing’s CEO earlier this week, and had “high hopes” that the Boeing-Lockheed team would decide not to pursue further action.
James emphasized the Air Force’s “valuable” relationship with Boeing on other programs, and stressed the importance of moving forward with engineering and development work on the B-21.
“Boeing is a very valuable partner, we have a lot going on with boeing, and we need to get on with the bomber,” she said.[FULL ARTICLE]