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The Nation

December 22, 1987

The Air Force said it would cost about $45 million to protect its new supersonic B-1B jet bomber from birds, which caused a September crash that killed three crew members. It awarded an $18.9-million addition to an initial contract of the same amount, for a total of about $37.9 million, to Rockwell International Corp. of Los Angeles for bird modification work on 20 B-1Bs. Air Force Pentagon spokesman Maj. Randy Morger said the estimated cost for modifying all 100 B-1Bs is $45 million, not $200 million as earlier expected. Mike Wallace, a spokesman for the Air Force Systems Command, said the modifications consist of placing deflectors under the aircraft's metal skin to protect vital components such as fuel, electrical and hydraulic lines.

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