The U.S. Air Force has awarded Boeing a $2.3 billion contract for the ninth production lot of 15 KC-46A Pegasus tanker aircraft, expanding its fleet of the world’s most advanced multi-mission aerial refueler. To date, 128 KC-46A Pegasus are on contract with the U.S. Air Force, with 68 delivered and operationally deployed worldwide.
«The combat-ready KC-46A Pegasus is transforming the role of the tanker for the 21st century», said James Burgess, vice president and KC-46A Pegasus program manager. «We’re proud to work side-by-side with the U.S. Air Force ensuring the KC-46A Pegasus provides unmatched capabilities and continues to evolve for the U.S. and its allies’ global mission needs».
The KC-46A Pegasus delivers crucial fuel and data for the fleet, as well as cargo, personnel and aeromedical transportation for joint force rapid mobility, global reach and agile combat employment.
Last year, the U.S. Air Force Air Mobility Command approved the KC-46A Pegasus for global operations including combat deployment. The KC-46A Pegasus continues to demonstrate its agile combat employment capabilities, recently completing a 42-hour endurance flight supporting a U.S. Air Force Bomber Task Force mission in the Indo-Pacific region.
During 2022, KC-46A Pegasus aircraft operating in a series of U.S. Air Force global employment exercises in the European theater, Indo-Pacific region and the Middle East performed at a greater than 95% mission capable rate, demonstrating the aircraft’s reliability and combat readiness.
Boeing builds KC-46A Pegasus aircraft on the 767 production line in Everett, Washington, supported by a supplier network of about 37,000 American workers employed by more than 650 businesses throughout more than 40 U.S. states. With Boeing’s in-line production, the KC-46A Pegasus is designed and built as a tanker from day one – not a post-production conversion – making the Pegasus uniquely suited to integrate advanced technology for fleet data connectivity and combat-ready defensive features, as well as new capabilities as the needs of the mission evolve.
Boeing is on contract for 138 KC-46A Pegasus tankers globally. Boeing has delivered two of six KC-46A Pegasus tankers to the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF), and is on contract for four KC-46A Pegasus tankers for the Israel Air Force (IAF). The expanding global fleet creates commonality and interoperability efficiencies and mission-readiness advantages for the U.S. Air Force and allies.
|Primary Function||Aerial refueling and airlift|
|Prime Contractor||The Boeing Company|
|Power Plant||2 × Pratt & Whitney 4062|
|Thrust||62,000 lbs/275.790 kN/28,123 kgf – Thrust per High-Bypass engine (sea-level standard day)|
|Wingspan||157 feet, 8 inches/48.1 m|
|Length||165 feet, 6 inches/50.5 m|
|Height||52 feet, 10 inches/15.9 m|
|Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW)||415,000 lbs/188,240 kg|
|Maximum Landing Weight||310,000 lbs/140,614 kg|
|Fuel Capacity||212,299 lbs/96,297 kg|
|Maximum Transfer Fuel Load||207,672 lbs/94,198 kg|
|Maximum Cargo Capacity||65,000 lbs/29,484 kg|
|Maximum Airspeed||360 KCAS (Knots Calibrated AirSpeed)/0.86 M/414 mph/667 km/h|
|Service Ceiling||43,100 feet/13,137 m|
|Maximum Distance||7,299 NM/8,400 miles/13,518 km|
|Pallet Positions||18 pallet positions|
|Air Crew||15 permanent seats for aircrew, including aeromedical evacuation aircrew|
|Passengers||58 total (normal operations); up to 114 total (contingency operations)|
|Aeromedical Evacuation||58 patients (24 litters/34 ambulatory) with the AE Patient Support Pallet configuration; 6 integral litters carried as part of normal aircraft configuration equipment|