Pegasus Prep

Testers at Edwards AFB, Calif., conducted flow-rate surge trials with the legacy KC-135 and KC-10 tankers to establish baseline data for evaluation of the new KC-46A Pegasus earlier this month. “We know that the KC-10 and KC-135 don’t cause damage to the receivers in flight,” 418th Flight Test Squadron refueling test engineer Justin Almeleh said in a release. “With successful test data, we can deduce that the KC-46 should have no greater risk of causing damage in flight than any legacy platform we have,” he explained. The ground tests at Edwards, which were held July 26 to Aug. 9, are part of ongoing risk-reduction efforts that will streamline KC-46 testing once it moves to the base. The surge tests saved extensive time and funding that would have been required to procure, integrate, and fly the instrumentation required to gather the same data in-flight, according to the release. Two KC-46s will eventually support the test program at Edwards, officials said.