TINKER AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. —
Development is full on the fourth hangar of the KC-46A Pegasus campus at Tinker Air Power Base.
The hangar got here on-line in September 2023, three years to the month after the primary KC-46 arrived at Tinker for depot upkeep. It’s the fourth of seven hangars that can make up Tinker’s latest mission acquisition.
The Air Power bought the 158-acre Burlington Northern Santa Fe railyard from Oklahoma County to make manner for KC-46 campus in February 2015. The land-purchase course of started in March 2012.
The land buy was made attainable by way of a joint effort of the U.S. Air Power ($8 million), the Metropolis of Oklahoma Metropolis ($23.5 million) and Oklahoma County ($12.5 million).
“It is vitally thrilling,” mentioned Colton Shaub, plane mechanic supervisor on the 568th Plane Upkeep Squadron. “As a result of we’re a rising group, now we have been stacked on prime of one another a bit bit. Getting to maneuver into different hangars and have extra space has been very good.”
House has been a problem for crews as new hangars are constructed.
“Quite a lot of the plane upkeep, till these hangars have been on-line, have been being accomplished outdoors on the apron,” mentioned Shaub. “When it’s snowing, we nonetheless should exit and carry out that upkeep outdoors. When it’s the summer time and it’s excessively sizzling, we’re on the market working too.”
This hangar is the primary on campus that’s constructed to help gas upkeep on the plane. Whereas generic plane upkeep is carried out inside the opposite three hangars, C test upkeep might be accomplished inside the latest hangar to come back on-line. The hangar additionally requires much less upkeep concerning gas earlier than an plane enters.
“For the plane to go in a few of the different bays, mechanics need to spend a couple of full shift, if no more, defueling and sumping the plane earlier than transferring it right into a hanger,” mentioned Shaub. “This hangar is ready up the place when an plane lands with a full gas load, it may possibly transfer instantly into the hangar.”
The flexibility to maneuver an plane instantly right into a hangar and never spend hours defueling will show essential within the occasion extreme or winter climate strikes into the realm.
Development has already begun on the fifth hangar of the KC-46 campus. It is going to include three bays, making it the most important upkeep hangar on the campus.
Development on Tinker’s KC-46 campus is anticipated to final into 2029. As soon as full, the realm will embrace hangars, ramp infrastructure, and a software program innovation lab.
The KC-46 will ultimately change the KC-135, a refueling tanker with a upkeep mission at Tinker.
In the long run, the Air Power may have invested over $837 million in navy development funding into this system.
The campus can be anticipated to make use of 1,300 folks below Oklahoma’s High quality Jobs Program. Administration positions throughout the program are presently being stuffed. Shaub says further mechanics might be employed in Spring 2024 to help with the 2025 workload.
Based mostly on the Boeing 767, the KC-46A is a wide-body, multi-role succesful tanker, supporting missions comparable to aerial refueling, cargo and aeromedical evacuation, in addition to passenger transport. Tinker AFB is the programmed depot upkeep hub for the KC-46A, offering all features of depot plane upkeep.