Taken on Jun. 30, 1969, the interesting photo in thiS article features the first U.S. Air Force (USAF) Preliminary Evaluation flight of the C-5A Galaxy conducted by the C-5A Test Force, that composed of Air Force Flight Test Center and Military Airlift Command personnel.
The first operational C-5 was delivered to the 437th Airlift Wing, Charleston Air Force Base (now known as Joint Base Charleston, S.C.) in Jun. 1970.
In Mar. 1989, the last of 50 C-5Bs was added to the 76 C-5As in the Air Force’s airlift force structure. The C-5B included all C-5A improvements as well as more than 100 additional system modifications to improve reliability and maintainability.
Based on a study showing 80 percent of the C-5 airframe service life remaining, Air Mobility Command (AMC) began an aggressive program to modernize the C-5 in 1998. The C-5 Avionics Modernization Program included upgrading the avionics to improve communications, navigation and surveillance/air traffic management compliance. The upgrade also added new safety equipment and installed a new autopilot system.
Another part of the C-5 modernization plan is a comprehensive Reliability Enhancement and Re-engining Program (RERP). The centerpiece of this program is the General Electric CF6-80C2 (F-138) commercial engine. This engine delivers a 22 percent increase in thrust, a 30 percent shorter take-off roll, has a 58 percent faster climb rate and will allow significantly more cargo to be carried over longer distances. With its new engine and other system upgrades, the RERP modified C-5A/B/Cs become C-5Ms, Super Galaxy. This modernization program will make the C-5 much quieter (FAA Stage 4 Compliant) and enhance aircraft reliability and maintainability, maintain structural and system integrity, reduce cost of ownership and increase operational capability well into the 21st century.
Photo credit: Undated Edwards History Office file photo
Artwork courtesy of AircraftProfilePrints.com
Source: U.S. Air Force
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