Fifth C-17 Going Down Under

Australia has signed the agreement with the US government to acquire a fifth C-17 transport via a foreign military sale, announced C-17 manufacturer Boeing. The additional airframe will bolster the Royal Australian Air Force’s ability to support international humanitarian-support and disaster-relief missions. Due to the RAAF’s pressing need for more airlift capacity, the US Air Force has approved Australia’s request to receive the new C-17 in August, according to Boeing. The aircraft will be assigned to RAAF Base Amberley, near Brisbane, home of 36 Squadron, which operates the country’s C-17 force. The Pentagon notified Congress of this potential sale in early March. Already this year, RAAF C-17s have supported disaster-relief efforts in Japan and New Zealand as well as at home after floods ravaged parts of Queensland.