Airbus, Boeing propose new proposal to US Air Force

ST. LOUIS, 12 July 2010. Airbus and The Boeing Company have submitted proposals to deliver the next generation of aerial refueling tanker aircraft to the U.S. Air Force. Airbus has proposed the A330 Tanker, offered by the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Co. (EADS). Boeing has submitted a proposal to the U.S. Air Force to provide its NewGen Tanker, the company’s next-generation aerial refueling tanker aircraft based on its 767 commercial airplane. The new aircraft could potentially replace 179 of 400 Eisenhower-era KC-135 aircraft currently in the Air Force fleet.

Jul 12th, 2010

Posted by Courtney E. Howard

ST. LOUIS, 12 July 2010. Airbus and The Boeing Company have submitted proposals to deliver the next generation of aerial refueling tanker aircraft to the U.S. Air Force. Airbus has proposed the A330 Tanker, offered by the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Co. (EADS). Boeing has submitted a proposal to the U.S. Air Force to provide its NewGen Tanker, the company’s next-generation aerial refueling tanker aircraft based on its 767 commercial airplane. The new aircraft could potentially replace 179 of 400 Eisenhower-era KC-135 aircraft currently in the Air Force fleet.

Boeing officials propose to the KC-X program office at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, an American-made, 767-based multimission tanker that will satisfy 372 mandatory Air Force requirements and be capable, survivable, and combat-ready at the lowest cost to the taxpayer, says a company spokesperson.
The 8,000-page proposal was drafted by an integrated "One Boeing" team from various sites across the company, including employees from the Commercial Airplanes; Defense, Space & Security; and Engineering, Operations & Technology organizations.

Dennis Muilenburg, president and CEO of Boeing Defense, Space & Security, says: " This revolutionary tanker will deliver widebody capabilities in a narrowbody footprint, operate in any theater or from any base, and -- with the lowest operating cost of any tanker in the competition -- save the Air Force and the American taxpayers billions of dollars."

Based on the Boeing 767 commercial aircraft, the NewGen Tanker is a widebody, multimission aircraft designed with advanced technology and to meet or exceed the Air Force's needs for transport of fuel, cargo, passengers, and patients. “It includes state-of-the-art systems to meet the demanding mission requirements of the future, including a digital flight deck featuring Boeing 787 Dreamliner electronic displays and a cockpit-design philosophy that places the pilot in command rather than allowing computer software to limit combat maneuverability,” says a representative. The NewGen Tanker also features an advanced KC-10 boom with an expanded refueling envelope, increased fuel offload rate, and fly-by-wire control system.

The Airbus A330 is an aerial refueling tanker aircraft based on the civilian A330-200 aircraft. The A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT), a military derivative of the A330-200 airliner, is designed as a dual-role air-to-air refueling and transport aircraft. The A330 MRTT can be equipped with a combination of any of the following systems: Airbus Military Aerial Refuelling Boom System (ARBS) for receptacle-equipped receiver aircraft; Cobham 905E under-wing refuelling pods for probe-equipped receiver aircraft; Cobham 805E Fuselage Refuelling Unit (FRU) for probe-equipped receiver aircraft; and Universal Aerial Refuelling Receptacle System Installation (UARRSI) for self-refueling.

More in Defense Executive