US Air Force Receives Three Boeing KC-46A Pegasus

The United States Air Force (USAF) has recently expanded its fleet with the addition of three new KC-46A Pegasus aircraft from Boeing. This delivery has boosted the USAF's fleet to a total of 75 aircraft.


Aircraft Details

The three new KC-46As, designated as 767-2Cs by Boeing, have the following registrations:

  • 20-46079 (MSN 41898)
  • 20-46082 (MSN 41901)
  • 21-46085 (MSN 41904)

Two of these aircraft (20-46082 and 20-46079) were flown to McGuire Air Force Base (WRI) in New Jersey, while the third one (20-46085) was directed to Travis Air Force Base (SUU) in California.


The KC-46A Pegasus

The KC-46A Pegasus is a militarized variant of the Boeing 767. It is equipped with a refueling boom driven by a fly-by-wire control system and is capable of fuel offload rates required for large aircraft. The aircraft's fuel can be pumped through the boom, drogue, and wing aerial refueling pods. The KC-46A can accommodate a mixed load of passengers, aeromedical evacuation, and cargo capabilities. Depending on fuel storage configuration, the aircraft can carry a palletized load of up to 65,000 pounds of cargo.


Challenges and Future Plans

Despite its capabilities, the KC-46A has faced challenges, including issues with navigation software, water-draining tubes, and the remote vision system for aerial refueling. However, these challenges have not deterred the USAF from being the largest customer of Boeing's KC-46A tanker transport, with nearly 120 orders. The USAF plans to replace its aging fleet of KC-135 aircraft with the KC-46A. With more deliveries on the way, it is clear that the KC-46A Pegasus will play a significant role in the future operations of the USAF.

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