The U..S Air Force completed its first aerial refueling of a stealth fighter jet through a KC-46A Pegasus aircraft during a test flight over Edwards Air Force Base in California, USAF said Friday. The Jan. 22 exercise saw KC-46 transfer fuel into an F-35A aircraft through the former’s boom as part of the third phase of refueling certification operations.
The tanker’s phase III refueling certification activities will continue throughout the year followed by the initial operational test and evaluation, which is expected to conclude in 2019. Additional aircraft are slated for delivery to McConnell AFB and Altus AFB in Oklahoma over the next few months to prepare for the operational evaluation.
KC-46A Pegasus is designed to transport cargo, passengers and patients. The aircraft can switch between a 1,200 gallon per minute boom and 400 gallon per minute drogue system without landing, making it suitable for various missions.