The Science of Stealth

The most classified technology in a stealthy airplane is its skin

(USAF / John Rossino)

Radar-Absorbent Coating

(USAF / Tech SGT Cecilio Ricardo)

The B-2 Spirit is also shaped for stealth and now has an improved radar-absorbent coating. Maintaining the B-2’s stealthy skin once required removing and meticulously reapplying nearly 3,000 feet of special tapes and caulk by hand, to seal the radar-reflective gaps between its panels. Northrop Grumman has developed a new coating, “alternate high-frequency material,” now applied by robot to reduce maintenance from days to hours. As far as is known, the B-2 has never been detected by enemy radar.


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