US and UK working on MoU for Airseeker refeuling

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posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 06:54 PM
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The US and UK are currently working on a Memorandum of Understanding for use of US KC-135 and KC-10 aircraft to refuel the new RC-135 Airseeker aircraft the UK are due to receive at the end of the year. The aircraft do not currently have, nor is there any plan to fit, a refueling probe, and require a boom refueling system.

During coalition operations it won't be a problem, as UK and US aircraft routinely refuel from each others tankers. The problem would be operations not involving the US.

The first aircraft will declare IOC in 2014, with delivery of the other aircraft every two years. Full IOC will be declared in 2017. Aircraft number one will be a baseline 10 system, the second will have baseline 11, the third will have baseline 12. The UK should also get a say in future developments for the aircraft.


The UK Royal Air Force and the USAF are working on a memorandum of understanding which will give the UK access to tankers equipped with refueling booms to support its fleet of RC-135 Rivet Joint intelligence-gathering aircraft.

Officers close to the Airseeker program, which will cover the procurement of three Boeing RC-135W Rivet Joints, tell Aviation Week they hope to have the MoU in place by the end of this year when the first RAF Rivet Joint arrives in the UK. The support is essential as the UK does not have any air-to-air refueling aircraft fitted with a boom, and there are no plans to add a probe to refuel from drogue-equipped aircraft in a bid to reduce costs in the Foreign Military Sales program.

According to officials the endurance of the RC-135 will be limited from the 9,000 ft. runway of the aircraft’s planned homebase of RAF Waddington, Lincolnshire. Officials point out that the UK ISTAR assets are regular users of USAF tankers based in Europe. British E-3D Sentry airborne early warning aircraft routinely top-up their tanks from USAF KC-135s based at RAF Mildenhall in the UK or from aircraft detached to the NATO base at Geilenkirchen in Germany which support the E-3As flown by NATO’s E-3A Component.

Source




posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 07:15 PM
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Do not the Dutch have boom equipped refuelers?

Wiki is your friend! Yes they have 2 McDonnell Douglas KDC 10's. So suppose they could use those?

Sure I was talking with a crew of such a plane at an air show at Waddington, few years back or maybe I got the wrong end of the stick.

The crew gave me a model plane which I gave to a young lad with some health problem who was stuck in his parents car which was parked next to mine, but sure it had a boom. Well what I would call a boom, maybe I have the terminology wrong? Fixed pole out the back, rather than a hose pipe.

Was a great day.

edit on 8-7-2013 by dowot because: Got my own answer.



posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 07:28 PM
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reply to post by dowot
 


The US has more tankers than some airforces have planes, so they're the more flexible one to come to for refueling options. The Dutch could be used as well as Turkey, Indonesia, and France (all three have bought KC-135s from the US). The US has over 400 KC-135s, and 59 KC-10s.

This is the KC-135 boom:



posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 07:45 PM
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Ta everso for the info.

Just finished reading the Wiki entry.

I used to live near to Hurn Airport, where I think, some of the first air refueling took place, with modified bombers, Halifax or Lancaster's..(?) Flight Refueling Ltd.

That seems not to be too correct as in flight refueling started way before then. Must read more.



posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 08:03 PM
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reply to post by dowot
 


The first air refueling took place on 27 June 1923 In a DH-4B over Rockwell field in California. The plane stayed in the air for 37 hours.




posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 08:10 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
reply to post by dowot
 


The US has more tankers than some airforces have planes, so they're the more flexible one to come to for refueling options. The Dutch could be used as well as Turkey, Indonesia, and France (all three have bought KC-135s from the US). The US has over 400 KC-135s, and 59 KC-10s.

This is the KC-135 boom:



Ahhh. Old but we'll hung. See that Steve! Told you I would do it!


On another note, mildenhall has more than enough tankers to support the rivet joint operations in Europe. They only need one a/r to complete the mission, usually an 80k offload, unless it's cobra ball then the can stay longer than usual, but when was the last time we used cobra ball recently?



posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 08:11 PM
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Goes to show how ill-informed one can be. Was sort of proud that the UK had developed the idea.

Then I looked up the history and saw what you just said. A pipe put into the fuel filler on the plane as they flew slowly along!

From little acorns etc etc.



posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 08:47 PM
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reply to post by Stealthbomber
 


Correcto. But what isn't mentioned is the danger the guy catching the fuel hose was under. One wrong move and that was the end of him. Now we use 3d cameras and sit in the front of the plane to refuel



posted on Jul, 8 2013 @ 08:55 PM
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posted on Jul, 9 2013 @ 09:10 AM
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reply to post by boomer135
 


Yeah I can imagine back in those days on would have been incredibly more dangerous.






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