Boeing has marked 50 years since the company delivered its last B-52 Stratofortress to the US Air Force.
B-52H 61-040 was assigned to Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota on October 26, 1962 where it remains in active service. Boeing built 744 B-52s, in eight different models, from 1952 to 1962.
The air force fleet today comprises 76 H-models – two test aircraft at Edwards Air Force Base, California, and 74 operational aircraft assigned to Minot and to Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana. All the H-models were built in Wichita.
The Boeing B-52 has been the backbone of the United States’ manned strategic bomber force for nearly 60 years. Modern engineering analyses show the B-52’s expected life span extending beyond 2040.