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Check This Plane Out: It Will Make the F-22, F-35 and F-15 Even Deadlier

Kris Osborn

Kris Osborn

Security, United States

Tankers can do that, as in adding more range to attack.

Check This Plane Out: It Will Make the F-22, F-35 and F-15 Even Deadlier

The KC 46A will refuel F-22s, F-15s, F-16s, F-35s, C-17 and KC 10s, among others.

The first new, high-tech next-generation KC-46A aerial refueling tanker will be delivered to the service later this year, marking the beginning of a long-sought after effort to replace the current aging fleet and better enable attack and ISR missions around the globe, service officials say.

(This first appeared last year.)

A new tanker, which will of course modernize and sustain the refueling mission for the Air Force, is fundamental to the service’s air superiority and rapid deployability priorities.

The new KC-46A tanker will build upon the mission current tankers currently serve, meaning it will be forward- stationed at strategically vital locations around the globe to increase mission length and effectiveness, as needed, for a wide-range of aircraft, Air Force developers said.

Extending the strike range of attack aircraft such as an F-15, F-35 or F-22 brings great tactical significance in a modern threat environment wherein long range strike weapons used by potential adversaries could make it challenging for the Air Force to base and launch fighters within the proper striking proximity. Such a dynamic may be of particular relevance in places like the Pacific, where a much-discussed "tryanny of distance" imposed by the region's geographical expanse can make attack mission access much more challeng

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