Boeing offers C-17B to US Army

October 17th, 2007  

Topic: Boeing offers C-17B to US Army

Boeing offers C-17B to US Army
Flight International 16/10/07
Boeing is seeking US Army support for a new version of its short take-off and landing (STOL) C-17 airlifter, a month after the concept was publicly rebuffed by a senior US Air Force official.
The C-17B adds a centreline landing gear, more powerful engines and redesigned flaps that increase lift for short take-offs - similar in concept to the 1970s-era McDonnell Douglas YC-14 prototype.
Boeing is pitching the idea as a near-term and low-risk solution to transporting US Army Future Combat System (FCS) units to remote landing sites, perhaps lacking prepared runways.
With a $2.5 billion price tag for development, Boeing argues the C-17B is cheaper than either the army's planned vertical take-off and landing Joint Heavy Lift rotorcraft, or the air force's Advanced Joint Combat Air System concept for a short take-off and landing airlifter.
Fresh orders would also protect Boeing's endangered Long Beach, California C-17 production line for several years, with the company warning that it will begin shutting down during 2008 without a new contract.

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