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The Air Force is Reactivating the Giant C-5 Galaxy -

The Air Force is Reactivating the Giant C-5 Galaxy por New Update Defence   2 anos atrás

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The Air Force is Reactivating the Giant C-5 Galaxy

The planes, retired in a cost-cutting move, are roaring back.

The U.S. Air Force is bringing back C-5M Super Galaxy transports recently mothballed due to budget cuts. The gigantic planes, sent to an early retirement in a cost-cutting move, are being brought back as money flows back into the service's coffers. The C-5M's range, greater than any other air transport, is a key factor.

The C-5 Galaxy was originally introduced in the late 1960s as a strategic airlifter able to cross entire oceans without refueling. The C-5 is the largest airlifter built by the United States, 65 feet high and with a wingspan of 247 feet. It can carry a maximum of 135 tons of cargo. With a combat load of sixty tons of cargo, the C-5M can fly from Dover Air Force Base in Delaware to Incirlik Air Force Base, Turkey nonstop without refueling. According to the Air Force, it can fly 7,000 miles without cargo.

The Air Force purchased 131 C-5 Galaxies between 1968 and 1989. Starting in 2013, the service decided to upgrade 52 of them to the new -M "Super Galaxy" standard, which involved swapping older TF-39 engines for new F138 commercial engines. The new engine generates 22 percent more thrust and allows for more cargo to be carried. The planes also received all-glass cockpits, a new autopilot system, new navigation and safety upgrades, an all-weather flight control system, and and new flight and engine instrument suites.

Unfortunately, budget cuts immediately sidelined a dozen C-5Ms, and the Air Force's fleet of non-upgraded C-5A/B/C Galaxies and Super Galaxies shrank from 112 to just 56 planes (see some of them here.) The Air Force plans to bring back two Super Galaxies a year over four years.

What's prompting the return of the giant planes? As the Pentagon reorients to the Asia-Pacific, it faces the prospect of flying long distances without refueling. At a House Armed Services Committee hearing, the head of the Air Force's Air Mobility Command claimed that the C-5 is the only plane that can make the trip from the continental United States, in this case Travis Air Force Base in California, to Yokota Air Base in Japan, just outside Tokyo.

The C-5 is so large it was once considered as a mobile launch platform for the Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile.

Source :
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