Sep 25, 2015

KC-46A makes historic first flight

Boeing’s first fully-configured KC-46A aerial refuelling tanker has begun its long-awaited first flight, lifting off from Paine Field in Washington today after some weather-related delays.
The 25 September flight to Boeing Field marks a significant step in the next-generation tanker programme, but comes approximately nine months behind schedule and almost five years after the Pegasus entered development.
"During this flight, they’ll check the basic integrity of the aircraft and exercise all the systems – operational checks on engines, flight controls and environmental systems," a Boeing spokeswoman said in statement after takeoff at 1:24pm Pacific Time.
This first flight had been expected in late 2014, but significant missteps such as misplaced wiring and more recently a contaminated fuel system have repeatedly setback the multibillion-dollar development programme, which is working toward a Pentagon “milestone C” low-rate production decision, now expected in April 2016.

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