IN PICTURES: USAF B-1Bs perform maritime mission over Europe

US Air Force (USAF)-operated Rockwell B-1B Lancers from the 9th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron (EBS) conducted air-to-air refuelling operations ahead of a counter maritime mission with NATO allies and partner nations in the Black Sea region on October 19. Key.Aero joined the 100th Air Refueling Wing (ARW) to witness the in-flight refuelling first-hand.


B-1B lancer
A B-1B Lancer from the USAF's 9th EBS - callsign 'Dark 02' - receives fuel from a US-operated KC-135R Stratotanker during a BTF-Europe mission on October 19, 2021. Josef Campion

The B-1B Lancers - serials 86-0110 (callsign 'Dark 01') and 86-0136 (callsign 'Dark 02') - departed RAF Fairford, Gloucestershire, shortly after 0700hrs (local time) and returned to the base some 12 hours later. During the mission, the bombers comprising 'Dark Flight' were in-flight refuelled by Boeing KC-135R Stratotankers - serials 63-8887 (callsign 'Larger 631') and 59-0292 (callsign 'Larger 632') - assigned to the 100th ARW's 351st Air Refueling Squadron (ARS) at RAF Mildenhall, Suffolk.

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