USAF reveals latest KC-46A base candidates

Candidate locations for the next active-duty and Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) main operating bases to host Boeing KC-46A Pegasus tanker aircraft have been selected by the US Air Force (USAF).

The proposed locations were announced by the Secretary of the Air Force on May 13. For the AFRC component, the candidate locations to host the next KC-46As are Beale Air Force Base (AFB), California; Grissom Air Reserve Base (ARB), Indiana; Joint Base Andrews-Naval Air Field Washington, Maryland; March ARB, California; Niagara ARB, New York; and Tinker AFB, Oklahoma.

KC-46A Pegasus [USAF/Senior Airman Charles T Fultz]
A USAF-operated Boeing KC-46A Pegasus - serial 17-46026 - from the 22nd Air Refueling Wing at McConnell AFB, Kansas, lands at Oscada-Wurtsmith Airport in Michigan on May 16, 2021. This aircraft was participating in Exercise Mobility Guardian 2021 at the time. USAF/Senior Airman Charles T Fultz

Candidates for the next active-duty component of KC-46A operating bases are Fairchild AFB, Washington, and MacDill AFB in Florida.

In total, 12 KC-46As will replace the complement of Boeing KC-135 Stratotankers, which are operated at one of the six AFRC candidate locations. In turn, 24 Pegasus tankers will replace the KC-135s currently employed at one of the two active-duty locations. Site surveys at each candidate main operating base will be conducted this summer and will be assessed against operational requirements, potential impacts to existing missions, housing, infrastructure and manpower.

The preferred locations are expected to be selected this autumn.