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KC-25 / KC-767

The year 1974 marked the first flight of the KC-747. A total of three were made, and possibly one remains in service, Outfitted with a KC-135 boom, the first 747 ever made was modified as a test bed for proximity tests and aerial refueling equipment integration. The Imperial Iranian AF bought 12 used 747s to be modified for military applications, three of which were configured as tankers. During exercise Midlink 77 Oct-Dec 1977, 50th Tactical Fighter Wing F-4 crews became the first in the USAF to be refueled by a KC-747 of the Imperial Iranian Air Force.

The Iranian aircraft employed an operator with direct view as per the KC-135 design, but located behind a recessed rear fuselage window in the aft pressure bulkhead, rather than in a protruding fairing as used by the KC-135. The conversion package for Iran was performed with the expectation that other clients would be found, and a full production standard documentation package was generated as a result.

The 747 design is a derivative of a 1960s Boeing proposal for a military airlifter that lost out to the Lockheed C-5A Galaxy. The aircraft was later evaluated against the DC-10 as part of the USAF Advanced Tanker/Cargo Aircraft (ACTA) program, losing out to the McDonnell Douglas KC-10A.

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Page last modified: 07-07-2011 02:33:41 ZULU