A B-1B Lancer supersonic heavy bomber jet of the United States Air Force (USAF) while conducting a flyover at the Air Force Station in Yelahanka in Bengaluru during the Aero India 2023 (All images courtesy: US Consulate General in Chennai)
Two B-1B Lancer supersonic heavy bomber jets of the United States Air Force (USAF) have got down to business at Aero India 2023 straightaway after arriving in Bengaluru from their temporary duty location at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam.
Skies over Bengaluru roared on Wednesday as the B-1B Lancers – commonly called the ‘Bone’ (for B-one) – conducted a flyover at the Air Force Station in Yelahanka.
The USAF on Tuesday expanded its lineup at Asia’s largest aviation event with the arrival of the long-range, supersonic heavy bombers which are capable of carrying out missions worldwide from its bases in the United States, as well as from forward deployed locations.
A ‘B-1B Lancer’ long-range, supersonic, heavy bomber of @usairforce
doing fly-by at #AeroIndia2023 #Bengaluru on Wednesday.
Two B-1s flew from South Dakota to Guam and then to Bengaluru on Feb 14 pic.twitter.com/M61waNwlF8
— Technical Astra (@kishanchand_89) February 16, 2023
It carries the largest conventional payload of both guided and unguided weapons in the US Air Force and is considered the backbone of America’s long-range bomber force.
The B-1B landed in India for the first time two years ago and conducted a fly-by on the inaugural day of Aero India 2021, escorted by an Indian Air Force Tejas fighter.
Washington believes that their return to India to participate in Aero India 2023 underscores the importance the United States places on the growing strategic partnership with India.
This year #AeroIndia2021 is extra special for the U.S. delegation led by @USAmbIndia U.S. Chargé d’Affaires a.i. Don Heflin who met with the fine @usairforce B-1 Lancer air crew in Bengaluru. This is the first time the B-1B is in India. #PartnersinDefense pic.twitter.com/1H1AXed46I
— U.S. Consulate General Chennai (@USAndChennai) February 5, 2021
“We are happy to have the B1 in India for the second time. These bombers made the journey from South Dakota to Guam and then to India just to add another exciting dimension to Aero India ’23. It’s a long mission to travel from the continental US to the Indian Ocean; but it was worth it to be part of the biggest air show in the region hosted by our Major Defence Partner, India,” said Rear Admiral Michael Baker, Senior Defence Official and Defence Attache at the US Embassy in New Delhi.
Besides the B-1s, the array of US aircraft participating in Aero India 2023 includes the USAF’s newest fifth-generation fighters – the stealthy, supersonic, multirole F-35A Lightning II and F-35A Joint Strike Fighter.
Throughout the week, an F-16 Fighting Falcon duo is conducting daily aerial demonstrations, showcasing the capability of one of the USAF’s leading fighter jets.
The US Air Force is not the only service showcasing airpower. This year, the US Navy is also displaying their most advanced multi-role strike fighters, the F/A-18E and F/A-18F Super Hornets from Carrier Air Wing 5, Marine Corps Air Station, Iwakuni, Japan.
“The US military’s participation in Aero India is an opportunity to demonstrate the strength of American airpower and serves as a venue to collaborate with like-minded partners, like India, to advance our shared vision for a free and open Indo-Pacific,” commented Major General Julian Cheater, Assistant Deputy Under Secretary of the US Air Force, International Affairs.
Leading US defence companies participating in Aero India 2023 with exhibits in the USA Partnership Pavilion include Aero Metals Alliance, Aerospace Industries Association (AIA), Astronautics Corporation of America, Boeing, Defence Security Cooperation Agency, GE Aerospace, General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc, Hi-Tech Import Export Corporation, Jonal Laboratories, Inc., Kallman Worldwide, Inc., Lockheed Martin, Pratt & Whitney, TW Metals, LLC, and United Performance Metals.
The United States Air Force Band of the Pacific’s seven-member music ensemble Final Approach, based out of Yokota Air Base in Japan, is also performing for the public at Aero India and at Saint Joseph’s University in Bengaluru.
On sidelines of #AeroIndia2023, the @USAFBandPacific Final Approach Ensemble is now making their way into the city of Bengaluru to rock and roll at @SJCBengaluru today, Feb 15, 5-6PM. Come join this #USIndia cultural exchange as the band takes Center stage, free entry. pic.twitter.com/jQEupnxMMT
— U.S. Consulate General Chennai (@USAndChennai) February 15, 2023
Also Read: Watch: US F-35 fighter jets make a stunning debut at Aero India 2023