Some art on KC-767AT, “KC-764”

Flightblogger has some interesting art comparing the Boeing KC-767AT and a possible “KC-764” based on the 767-400 at its blog here. The art looks at the tail strike issue, a potential problem for the KC-764 discussed by Boeing at the Farnborough Air Show.

Update, 1:40 PM PDT: Reuters reports that the Final RFP is now expected next week. It was originally due Friday, then this week. There is a third meeting between Boeing and the USAF/DOD (Northrop is taking advantage of these meetings as well). Boeing is pushing its position that (1) the original RFP specifications should be the governing document in this re-bid or (2) if there are changes, the company needs more time to consider another airplane, such as a tanker based on the 777F or 767-400.

Internet chatter about the prospect of a tanker based on the C-17 seems to be just that. A Boeing spokesman tells us he knows nothing of a prospective KC-17.

Update, 2:15 PM PDT: With all this talk about Boeing potentially offering a KC-764 or KC-777 (or even a KC-17), the obvious question that nobody has apparently asked until now is whether Northrop/EADS might respond with a tanker based on the A330-300, a plane larger than the A330-200 on which Northrop’s KC-30 is based.

Well, we asked Northrop. The response:

“We are back in a competition so the last thing we are going to do is tip our hand as to our bid strategy. Nice try.”

Update, 3:45 PM PDT Aug. 21: Reuters has this update, looking at the prospect of a Boeing protest.

One Comment on “Some art on KC-767AT, “KC-764”

  1. Beware that the FlightBlogger speculation has errors in its attempted calculation of rotation angle thus runway requirement for a 767-400, including that gear geometry is not correct. Basic problem is assuming 767-400 is only a fuselage stretch from the -200. (I don’t recall which wing Boeing proposed for the USAF tanker that had -200 fuselage length. My impression is that Boeing has been mixing chunks and systems from various models to optimize capability.)

    That’s done for airliners as well, including on current 737 – something originated for one need is And they bump performance – IIRC Boeing improved airfield performance of the 737-900 then offered the aerodynamic improvements on smaller models for uses needing even better airfield performance. As long done – the 737-200 “Advanced” wing improvement package was most welcome as it supported 25 more pax on short runways (performance at the margin is often highly leveraged).)

    Obviously the non-recurring cost must be swallowed. In the case of the 737-200 it probably made a substantive contribution to keeping the production line open (it was kept open by small orders from developing airlines).

    Boeing may be doing a similar thing with the C-17 with short/lesser runway capability and avionics.

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