Boeing said on 20 April that it has delivered the eighth KC-46A Pegasus tanker aircraft to the U.S. Air Force.
“We’re proud to deliver the 8th KC46 tanker to the U.S. Air Force at McConnell Air Force Base,” announced the aerospace giant in a Twitter post.
McConnell houses Airmen that are certified on both the KC-135 and the KC-46. Even with the addition of the KC-46, the fuel shop will continue to maintain the KC-135.
The KC-46A Pegasus is a widebody, multirole tanker that can refuel all U.S., allied and coalition military aircraft compatible with international aerial refueling procedures. During extensive flight testing, six KC-46 completed more than 3,800 flight hours and offloaded more than four million pounds of fuel to A-10, B-52, C-17, KC-10, KC-135, KC-46, F-15E, F-16 and F/A-18 aircraft. The Pegasus has been rigorously tested throughout all aspects of the refueling envelope and in all conditions, including day, night and covert.
The KC‐46A provides improved capabilities over older Air Force air refueling aircraft to include boom and drogue refueling on the same sortie, a refueling capability of more than 212,000 pounds of fuel and palletized cargo up to 65,000 pounds, depending on fuel storage configuration.
Boeing designed the KC-46 to carry passengers, cargo and patients. The aircraft can detect, avoid, defeat and survive threats using multiple layers of protection, which will enable it to operate safely in medium-threat environments.
The KC-46, derived from Boeing’s commercial 767 airframes, is built in the company’s Everett, Wash., facility. Boeing is on contract for 52 of an expected 179 tankers for the Air Force.
— Boeing Defense (@BoeingDefense) 20 April 2019