Only a few weeks after Boeing Co., Seattle (WA) received a contract for twelve KC-46A Pegasus tanker transporters (See Scramble News "Plus Twelve"), the company again received a KC-46 contract. On 20 January 2021 they were awarded a USD 2,1 billion modification contract for fifteen Boeing KC-46A Pegasus tanker transport aircraft.
The modification contract - as part of the US Fiscal Year 2021 budget - provides for the exercise of fifteen Pegasus' and they must be completed by 31 May 2024.
Boeing has received so far orders for 94 KC-46A and this is the seventh production lot. In August 2016, the LOT 1 and 2 were ordered for seven and twelve aircraft, in January 2017 the LOT 3 order contained fifteen aircraft. This was followed by LOT 4 with eighteen aircraft in September 2018. The fifth LOT also contained fifteen aircraft and was awarded in September 2019. LOT 6 was awarded on 12 January 2021 and contained twelve aircraft.
Currently, some forty KC-46s are delivered to the USAF, with another ten in the last stadium of production and/or being prepared for delivery. The forty Pegasus' are so far delivered to four different units, including one Air National Guard (ANG) and one Air Force Reserve Command unit. They are operating the new tankers or are in the process of replacing the KC-135R Stratotanker with the new aircraft. Units concerned are the 22nd Aerial Refueling Wing (ARW)/344th Aerial Refueling Squadron (ARS) at McConnel AFB (KS), the 56th ARS/97th Operations Group (OG) at Altus AFB (OK), the 77th ARS/916th OG Air Force Reserve at Seymour Johnson AFB (NC) and the 133rd ARS New Hampshire ANG at Pease ANGB (NH).
Photo by Boeing, John D. Parker