The KC-46 Pegasus has hit a few bumps as it nears its delivery deadline, but the Air Force still expects the first of the refueling tankers to arrive by late spring.
The service hopes to receive 18 fully capable aircraft by October 2018.
Several deficiencies were discovered during KC-46 testing, including reports of the tanker’s boom scraping aircraft during mid-air refueling. The boom, which extends into a receptacle on the receiver aircraft, in some cases was making contact outside of the receptacle and scratching the receiving aircraft.
Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said delivery is still on track for the spring, however.
Everhart, of Air Mobility Command, said he thinks once testing is complete and the aircraft start getting on the ramp, “they’re going to clear out pretty quick” to the appropriate bases.”
Altus Air Force Base in Oklahoma and McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas will be the first to receive the KC-46, which will replace the KC-135 Stratotanker.