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AMC head wants more survivable tankers

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posted on Mar, 6 2017 @ 03:02 PM
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The Air Force is currently performing a capabilities based assessment to determine how they want to proceed with the KC-Z program. The industry is currently already looking at ideas that include a blended wing design, such as the Lockheed HWB, or Boeing X-48. In the meantime, the head of AMC has talked about a platform that can change the radar waveform to be more survivable.

In addition they're looking at a layered approach, that would include making the KC-135 more survivable, until it's retired sometime around 2040. The KC-135 is currently undergoing the Block 45 upgrade, that performs a CNS/ATM upgrade. As part of the upgrade the aircraft get a new autopilot, flight director, radio altimeters, and replaced multiple cockpit instruments with a large center mounted MFD. AMC is currently assessing the next block upgrade, that could include RF threat countermeasures, and self defense systems, possibly including the new ALR-64A(V) digital RWR.


ORLANDO, Fla. — The Air Mobility Command chief has an ambitious vision for the Air Force’s aerial refueling fleet that ranges from increasing the survivability of the 60-year old KC-135 to starting development on a next-generation penetrating tanker.

Once AMC’s tanker capabilities-based assessment wraps up this summer, the command will know more about how it wants to pursue KC-Z, a leap-ahead development that will incorporate technologies for minimizing the aircraft’s visibility to radar and infrared sensors, said Gen. Carlton Everhart.

“I’m looking for a platform that is going to give me persistence in the airspace,” he told reporters March 2 at the Air Force Association’s air warfare symposium. “I’m looking at a platform that is going to be able to change the waveform signature.”

www.defensenews.com...




posted on Mar, 6 2017 @ 03:16 PM
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I don't know but surely at 60 years of age you deserve a retirement and let someone else take the strain shall we say



posted on Mar, 6 2017 @ 03:20 PM
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a reply to: Maxatoria

Both the B-52 and KC-135 are going to be pushing 100 by the time they're finally retired. I think by then they'll definitely have earned it.



posted on Mar, 6 2017 @ 07:53 PM
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Air Force listening to the Navy?



posted on Mar, 10 2017 @ 10:52 AM
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posted on Mar, 10 2017 @ 12:52 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Does this mean that the KC-10s might be freed up? That really gets the mind gears turning...



posted on Mar, 10 2017 @ 03:14 PM
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a reply to: Barnalby

Not until the -46 reaches IOC.



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