Boeing has delivered the last of the Chilean Air Force’s three KC-135E Stratotankers.
March 29: Boeing has delivered the last of the Chilean Air Force’s three KC-135E Stratotankers.
The aircraft arrived at Boeing’s San Antonio facility last June for maintenance work, which included a variety of depot-level inspections, repairs, maintenance, modification and repainting. The KC-135E was then flown to Santiago, Chile, by a crew from the US Defense Contract Management Agency’s 313th Flight Test Squadron on March 9.
“Boeing worked with the Chilean Air Force to incorporate lessons learned on the first and second aircraft to deliver the final KC-135 and return it to doing what it does best,” said Mike Wright, Boeing KC-135 programme director. “This highly dependable aircraft is a critical resource to Chile for refueling missions and humanitarian assistance.”
KC-135 aircraft receive Programmed Depot Maintenance (PDM) after five years of service or 20,000 hours of flight time. Boeing has been performing PDM for the US Air Force and other international customers at its San Antonio facility since 1998.
The first Chilean Air Force KC-135 to go through PDM was delivered on February 18, 2010, a week before an 8.8-magnitude earthquake hit Chile. The aircraft was immediately put into use to conduct humanitarian missions. Delivery of the second aircraft took place on August 30, 2011, one day before the KC-135 marked its 55th anniversary of first flight.
The Chilean government purchased the three KC-135E-model aircraft on July 8, 2009 through the US Air Force Foreign Military Sales Office at Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma.