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Diane Publishing Books
KC-46 Tanker Aircraft: Key Aerial Refueling Capabilities Should Be Demonstrated Prior to the Production Decision
Michael J. Sullivan (au)
Aerial refueling -- when aircraft refuel while airborne -- allows the U.S. military to fly farther, stay airborne longer, and transport more weapons, equipment, and supplies. Yet the mainstay of the U.S. tanker forces -- the KC-135 Stratotanker -- is over 50 years old. It is increasingly costly to support and its age-related problems could potentially ground the fleet. As a result, the Air Force initiated the $49 billion KC-46 program to replace the aerial refueling fleet with plans to produce 18 tankers by 2017 and 179 aircraft in total. This report addresses progress made in 2014 towards (1) achieving cost and performance goals; (2) meeting schedule targets; and (3) gathering manufacturing knowledge prior to the low-rate production decision. Tables and figures. This is a print on demand report.
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