Military Aviation > Air Forces

The Tanker Joke - round... 4, I think?

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Ow yeah, forgot to mention, there's this talk again about imposing a penalty cost factor on the EADS bid for "illegal" subsidies. But I can't find whether a) the bill has been proposed yet, and b) when congress will vote on it or the outcome if it's already passed. Anyone?

Also, I think that maneuvrability claim has something to do with the FCS... I can't remember exactly, I think the new system doesn't have (the same) computer imposed limits as you'd get on a normal FBW airliner.

Boeing is desperate it seems, they are now bringing up concerns about the possibility of EU boycotting supplies to the US, that Washington has much better leverage over Boeing than over EADS-NA, and this: EADS dealing in Iran,

shawn a:
The article in the May 17th issue of AW&ST says "A bipartisan group of lawmakers from states with Boeing work is proposing a Fair Defense Competition Act that would require the Pentagon to apply penalties to EADS North America's latest bid for $35 billion worth of work building aerial refuelers for the US Air Force."
WOW!-- we finally got some of that "bipartisan" co-operation that everyone campaigned on last election!
The proposal was put together by Kansas representatives Senator Sam Brownback (...back, not nose?), and representative Tod Tiahrt, (both republicans--where's the bi-partisan-ness?)
Their claim is that "Airbus, owned by EADS, accepted about $5 billion in illegal subsidies for it's A330 product line"
Tiahrt, who evidently did the math, says a penalty of about $5 million per aircraft would be about right, based on the subsidy's value across a production run of 1,000 aircraft.
1,000 tankers to refuel 187 Raptors, and who knows how few Lightning II's? Back to math class for you, Tiahrt.
The article goes on to say they planned to attach their proposal to the defense authorization and/or the defense appropriations bills, and also states "It may be too late. A source selection is expected in November, and in recent years congress has been slow in passing annual spending bills" (Our congress has been slow!!?)
The FBW FCS is probably intended for more precise positioning maneuvers during refueling, but for "combat surviveability"?
I guess you're right about the magazine ads being aimed at lobbyists and others with influence, instead of decision makers.
Niels, do I just go to Milavia to get the specs on the contenders, and the specs on the KC-10?
Seems to me the new planes might barely exceed the capabilities of the KC-10, with maybe just their own fuel economy being better.
About the military spec-worthyness of the 787, there evidently was a redesign of something called "shear ties" in the aft fuselage because ties used to connect the fuselage frames to the skin started detaching from the skin after "several cold-hot cycles". Well, I guess that's what ground and flight test programs are for. Uh. can someone remind me what computer aided design (CAD) is for?
Forgive my sarcasm, it's my nature.


--- Quote ---Niels, do I just go to Milavia to get the specs on the contenders, and the specs on the KC-10?

--- End quote ---

No, I haven't done the tankers, as apart from the refueling they are kinda boring aircraft. I have been gathering info on the history of IFR, but never got to writing something. Plus there's already some good out there:

For KC-10 specific:
For factsheets on all heavies:

And last time I posted the news that Airbus had won, doing so by watching live coverage of the press announcement and writing my own story. Took a few good hours, only to see the decision being reversed several months later. Since then, I haven't bothered to report on this anymore, apart from here on the forum.

--- Quote ---Seems to me the new planes might barely exceed the capabilities of the KC-10, with maybe just their own fuel economy being better

--- End quote ---

You're probably right, although iirc both boom 'flowrates' are higher? And yeah fuel economy.

But KC-X is for replacement of the KC-135E/R/T. There will be a KC-Y competition for the KC-10 replacement. Likely it will be the same plane as the one that gets the KC-X. KC-X is dual role, and at least for the A330 this means it will do all its tanking from its own wingtanks. I could imagine a fuel tank being fitted in the cargo hold to the same aircraft for KC-Y, thus making it better than the KC-10.   

Still, I'd recommend the USAF to get some 'desert' DC-10s and convert them to 'stop-gap' tankers.

shawn a:
Yeah, I looked at a few sites last night, and the KC-10 seems to carry more offloadable fuel than even a 777 tanker would.
Offload rate for the-10 was put at 1100 gals. ger minute from the boom, and 470  gpm for the hose. Offload capacities were stated as much as 356,000 lbs! (can that be right?) a different site claimed 235,000 lbs at a range of 1500 nm.
I think the USAF specified 1200 gpm from the new boom.
The receiving aircraft must have certain limits on their intake rate.
The USAF chose the -330 once, but many blogs decried the choice based on ramp space considerations, booms over the battle, aircraft weight, length of available forward-base runways, and a few other things.
Makes no sense to me to choose the same tanker twice for the KC-X, and the KC-Y.
If the USAF decides to retire the C-5, then we'll need tankers with a lot of capacity to refuel C-17s on their way to overseas destinations.
Just let's make the damn decision, and start producing them!! Whatever the choice!

365,000 lb is the number on the airforce's fact sheet for max fuel load, so unless you want to offload it on the ground without running the engines, offload capability is not that, LOL.

There's also a small lobby going for a split buy, seems they've considered the idea without ever thinking about costs?


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