Pond and FSB Begin Design of First Fuel Cell Hangar for B-21 Aircraft

Pond and its joint venture partner Frankfurt-Short- Bruza Associates (FSB-Pond JV) was awarded its first task order to support the U.S. Air Force beddown of its newest stealth bomber, the B-21 Raider.

The first location for the B-21 aircraft is Ellsworth Air Force Base, near Rapid City, South Dakota, currently home to the B-1 “Lancer” bomber. The $49 million, single-bay fuel cell hangar will include maintenance shops, training spaces, and administrative facilities to support fuel cell maintenance activities. This new structure will connect to an adjacent hangar to share spaces between the two facilities.

“Aircraft hangars are unique for every Installation. The wide variety of associated facility requirements that support aircraft maintenance and training operations requires a broad expertise in both the aircraft being bedded down and in the associated facility and infrastructure design,” said Bob Ruch, executive vice president of Pond. “This is a vital and historic moment for the Air Force, and we’re proud to help further its mission.”

As part of a shared $200 million capacity, seven-year contract, FSB-Pond will provide full design of the new hangar on behalf of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Omaha District. The team will work closely with USACE, the Air Force Civil Engineer Center (AFCEC), the Air Force Global Strike Command (AFGSC), the Ellsworth AFB B-21 Program Integration Office, and the Ellsworth AFB Civil Engineering Squadron to develop a design to meet project requirements.

“FSB and Pond have 15 years of experience working together on large beddown projects for both the federal government and commercial aviation industry,” said Gene O. Brown, PE, LEED AP, project manager and director of Federal Programs at FSB. “This long-awaited program is a critical element of the Air Force’s strategic deterrence capability, and we are proud to play a role in advancing this initiative.”

FSB-Pond has assisted the Air Force with more than 50 hangar designs at installations around the world. As planners, design architects, and engineers, our team knows firsthand what it takes to design new facilities and alter existing facilities. This knowledge allows the team to better assess hangar needs and provide the most efficient and cost-effective solution.

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