U.S. aerospace manufacturer Boeing announced on its Twitter account that KC-46 mid-air refueling tanker complete receiver certification testing with stealthy F-35 Lightning II fighter aircraft.
“U.S Air Force and Boeing complete KC46 tanker receiver certification testing with stealthy F-35 Lightning II,” Boeing said on Twitter.
During the certification flight tests, KC-46 and F-35 aircraft flew at different airspeeds, altitudes and configurations to ensure compatibility and performance throughout the refueling envelope of each receiver.
The KC-46, derived from Boeing’s commercial 767 airframe, is built in the company’s Everett, Wash., facility.
The KC-46A is a multirole tanker that can refuel all allied and coalition military aircraft compatible with international aerial refueling procedures and can carry passengers, cargo and patients.
The KC-46A Pegasus is intended to start replacing the Air Force’s aging tanker fleet, which has been refueling aircraft for more than 50 years. With more refueling capacity and enhanced capabilities, improved efficiency and increased capabilities for cargo and aeromedical evacuation, the KC-46A will provide aerial refueling support to the Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps as well as allied nation aircraft.
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.
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— Boeing Defense (@BoeingDefense) May 9, 2019