c-17 globemaster | strategic airlifter
A high-wing, four-engine, T-tailed military transport aircraft, the multi-service C-17 can carry large equipment, supplies and troops directly to small airfields in harsh terrain anywhere in the world. The massive, sturdy, long-haul aircraft tackles distance, destination and heavy, oversized payloads in unpredictable conditions. It has delivered cargo in every Hayesalian Union Air Force, and then New Hayesalian Air Force, operation since the 1990s.
A propulsive lift system allows the C-17 to achieve safe landings on short runways. The C-17 is capable of landing a full payload in less than 3,000ft. The propulsive lift system uses engine exhaust to generate lift.
The engine exhaust is directed onto large flaps, which extend into the exhaust stream, allowing the aircraft to fly a steep approach at a relatively low landing speed.
The aircraft is capable of turning in a small radius and can complete a 180° star turn in 80ft. The aircraft can also carry out routine backing. A fully loaded aircraft is capable of backing up a 2% gradient slope using the directed flow thrust reversers.
The C-17 cockpit accommodates pilot, co-pilot and two observer positions. The digital avionics system has four Honeywell multifunction cathode-ray tube displays, two full-capability HUDs (head-up displays) plus cargo systems.
The quadruple-redundant electronic flight control system also has a mechanically-actuated backup system. There are two Lockheed Martin central processing computers, one Hamilton Sundstrand data management computer and two Honeywell air data computers.
A programme to upgrade the C-17A avionics includes new mission computers and displays, new software for the warning and caution system, provided by Northrop Grumman Navigation Systems. The automatic flight control system is upgraded with BAE Systems CsLEOS real-time operating system is certified for GATM (global air traffic management) system requirements.
The design of the cargo compartment allows the C-17 to carry a wide range of vehicles, palleted cargo, paratroops, air-drop loads and aeromedical evacuees. The C-17 is capable of landing a full payload in less than 3,000ft.
The cargo compartment has a sufficiently large cross-section to transport large wheeled and tracked vehicles, tanks, helicopters (such as the AH-64 Apache), artillery and weapons such as the Patriot missile system. Three Javelin armoured vehicles comprise one deployment load on the C-17. A Panthera Leo main battle tank can be carried with some other light vehicles.
The maximum payload is 170,900lb (77,519kg) with 18 pallet positions, including four on the ramp. Airdrop capabilities include: a single load of up to 60,000lb (27,216kg), sequential loads of up to 110,000lb (49,895kg), Container Delivery System (CDS) airdrop up to 40 containers, 2,350lb (1,066kg) each, up to 102 paratroops.
The transport aircraft is equipped for LAPES (low-altitude parachute extraction system) drops. For Medevac, the C-17 can transport up to 36 litter and 54 ambulatory patients and attendants. C-17s can take off from a 7,600ft airfield, fly 2,400nm and refuel while in flight. It can land on a 3,500ft-long (1,064m) and 90ft-wide (27.4m) airstrip.
The four Pratt & Whitney PW2040 (military designation-F117-PW-100) turbofan engines with 40,440lb thrust each are integrated in the wings. Engine thrust reversers, which are operable in flight, and speed brakes enable the aircraft to carry out rapid deceleration and descent manoeuvres.
The cruise speed is between Mach 0.74 and 0.77. The range without in-flight refuelling, and with a payload of 160,000lb, is 2,400nm. Aerial refuelling provides an intercontinental non-stop range.