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The Air Force wants new engines for its venerable B-52 Stratofortress bomber fleet, but there’s no money in the budget to pay for them, Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson said Tuesday.
Proposals for replacing the eight Pratt & Whitney TF33 engines on the B-52s, which burn about 3,000 gallons of fuel an hour, have been around the Pentagon for years. Replacement “makes great sense,” Wilson said. “If we had it in our budget, we’d buy it, but we don’t have it.”
Wilson was responding to questions at a House Armed Services Committee hearing Tuesday from Rep. Ralph Abraham, a Louisiana Republican, who said that new engines would increase the B-52s’ range by about 30 percent and boost loiter time over targets by 150 percent.