C-17 Globemaster III
Description and Purpose:
The Boeing C-17 Globemaster III is designed to fulfill military and humanitarian airlift needs well into the 21st century. A high-wing, four-engine, T-tailed aircraft with a rear-loading ramp, the C-17 can carry large combat equipment and troops or humanitarian aid across international distances directly to small austere airfields anywhere in the world.
With a payload of 170,000 pounds, the C-17 can take off from a 7,600-foot airfield, fly 2,400 nautical miles, and land on a small, austere airfield in 3,000 feet or less. The C-17 is equipped with an externally blown flap system that allows a steep, low-speed final approach and low-landing speeds for routine short-field landings.
Worldwide, there are 215 C-17s in service. Boeing’s program of record with the U.S. Air Force is to design, build and deliver 223 C-17s through September, 2012. Boeing has delivered 196 C-17s to the USAF as of April, 2010.
There are 19 C-17s in service with international customers. The RAF has acquired six and will receive a seventh in December, 2010; the Royal Australian Air Force and Canadian Defence Forces have each received four C-17s. The 12-nation Strategic Airlift Capability consortium---members of NATO and Partnership for Peace---received its three C-17s in 2009. Qatar, the first Middle East customer to order C-17s, received two C-17s in 2009 and holds options for two more. In January, 2010, Boeing and the United Arab Emirates announced that the UAE had agreed to acquire six C-17s.
|Length:||174 feet (53.04 m)|
|Height at Tail:
Wing Span to Wingtips:
|55.1 feet (16.79 m)
169.8 feet (51.74 m)
At 4,000 nautical miles:
|164,900 lbs. (74,797 kg)
100,300 lbs. (45,495 kg)
|Range with Payload:
40,000 pounds (paratroop):
2,420 nautical miles
5,610 nautical miles
|Cruise Speed:||0.74 – 0.77 Mach|
|Takeoff Field Length (Max Gross Weight):||7,740 ft. (2,359.15 m)|
|Landing Field Length:
160,000 lbs of Cargo:
3,000 ft. (914.40 m)
A cockpit crew of two and one loadmaster operates the C-17, which can be refueled in flight. This cost-effective flight crew complement is made possible through the use of an advanced digital avionics system and advanced cargo systems. In the cargo compartment the C-17 can carry Army wheeled vehicles in two side-by-side rows. Three combat ready Stryker infantry-fighting vehicles comprise one deployment load. Similarly, the Army's newest main battle tank, the M-1, can be carried.
The four engines are Pratt & Whitney PW2040 series turbofans, designated as F117-PW-100 by the Air Force, each producing 40,440 pounds of thrust. The engines are equipped with directed-flow thrust reversers capable of deployment in flight. On the ground, a fully loaded aircraft, using engine reversers, can back up a two-percent slope.
The U.S. Air Force declared the first C-17 squadron operational in January 1995. Since first flight in 1991, the fleet has amassed more than 1.5 million flying hours. C-17s have been involved in numerous contingency operations, including flying troops and equipment to Operation Joint Endeavor to support peacekeeping in Bosnia, Allied Force Operation in Kosovo, Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
During flight-testing at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., C-17s set 33 world records – more than any other airlifter in history – including payload to altitude, time-to-climb, and short-takeoff-and-landing marks in which the C-17 took off in less than 1,400 feet, carried a payload of 44,000 pounds to altitude, and landed in less than 1,400 feet.
USAF C-17s are based at Charleston Air Force Base, S.C.; McChord Air Force Base, Wash.; the Air National Guard Base at Jackson, Miss.; McGuire Air Force Base, N.J.; March Air Reserve Base, Calif.; Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii; Altus Air Force Base, Okla., Dover Air Force Base, Delaware and Travis Air Force Base in Northern California. The RAF C-17s are based at Brize Norton in the United Kingdom. The Royal Australian Air Forces C-17 unit is based at Amberley, in Queensland, Australia. Canadian C-17s are based at Canadian Forces Base Trenton, Ontario. The NATO-led 12-nation Strategic Airlift Capability C-17 fleet is based at Pápa Air Base, Hungary. Qatar’s C-17s are assigned to Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar.
Read more about C-17 on Boeing's website.