Boeing gained a $2.9 billion contract from the United States Air Force this week, making them responsible for the fourth production lot of KC-46A tanker aircraft and all associated equipment.
The KC-46A is a tanker with multiple roles, able to refuel allied and coalition military aircraft, as well as carry passengers, patients, and cargo. Boeing previously handled the other three production lots, and with the 18 included in this set, the total number they will have produced for the Air Force will come to 52. Eventually, they hope to build 179 of the refueling aircraft as a means of replacing the Air Force’s aging tanker fleet.
“We’re excited to partner with the Air Force on an aircraft that will provide its fleet unmatched capabilities and versatility,” Mike Gibbons, Boeing KC-46A tanker vice president and program manager, said. “This is another big milestone for the team, and we look forward to delivering this next-generation, multi-role tanker for years to come.”
Deliveries are scheduled to begin later this year, following assembly at the company’s Everett, Wash., facility.