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Boeing details tanker capabilities at US Air Force Association conference

Boeing [NYSE: BA] today unveiled additional details of the company's potential offering in the U.S. Air Force KC-X tanker competition, saying the KC-7A7 will offer maximum capability at the lowest cost.

In a briefing at the Air Force Association's 2009 Air & Space Conference and Technology Exposition outside Washington, Rick Lemaster, Boeing KC-X director and program manager, said Boeing has "been listening to our U.S. Air Force customer, and we appreciate their efforts in preparing for the next competition."

"We are prepared to offer the best solution through the KC-7A7," Lemaster continued. "Whether it's the agile 767-based tanker or the larger 777-based tanker, Boeing is ready to deliver maximum capability at the lowest cost."

Lemaster highlighted the merits of the KC-7A7 -- a range of tanker options the company first introduced in June at the Paris Air Show -- by highlighting the full complement of capabilities of both aircraft.

"If the Air Force wants a flexible wide-body tanker that is well suited to operate in an austere, expeditionary environment, the Boeing 767-based tanker is a powerful and demonstrated solution," said Lemaster. "And if the Air Force values more fuel, cargo and passengers, the Boeing 777-based tanker offers superior capability."

Based on mission scenarios, the Boeing 767-based tanker can offload 20 percent more fuel, carry three times the cargo and transport five times the number of passengers compared with the Air Force's current KC-135, within a comparable narrow-body footprint. The Boeing 777-based tanker is comparable in size to the Airbus A330, but delivers 23 percent more fuel and carries 44 percent more cargo and 42 percent more passengers than the A330 in a more reliable and technologically advanced airframe.

Boeing also announced the launch of a new Web site dedicated to KC-7A7: UnitedStatesTanker.com. "What better venue to launch UnitedStatesTanker.com than at one of the country's largest gatherings of the Air Force community," Lemaster said. "The UnitedStatesTanker.com Web site provides a public forum to communicate information about the Boeing KC-7A7 offering and updates throughout the competition."

The site features a blog to encourage open dialogue and an exchange of ideas. It also highlights the capabilities of both platforms through a photo gallery, fact sheets and news links and will serve as the single Web-based point of contact for all Boeing information about its KC-7A7 offering.

Press release issued by Boeing Defense, Space & Security on September 14, 2009


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 Related aircraft programs:
Boeing 777
Boeing 767

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