On May 19, 2023, a C-5M Super Galaxy delivered the retired F-117A Nighthawk from Tonopah, to become part of the Museum of Aviation near Robins AFB.
On May 19, 2023, US Air Force (USAF) C-5M Super Galaxy 85-0002 belonging to the 436th Airlift Wing landed at Robins Air Force Base (AFB), Ga, with the callsign “Hagar 91.”
As reported by Scramble Magazine, earlier the day it departed Tonopah, Nevada Test and Training Range (NV) with F-117A Nighthawk 81-10794 stowed in its belly.
As the featured image of this post shows, the Super Galaxy delivered the retired F-117A from Tonopah, to become part of the Museum of Aviation near Robins AFB (GA).
According to Museum of Aviation Facebook Page, the Nighthawk will be on display in the amphitheater of the museum for two weeks before being moved behind closed doors for a year-long restoration process.
F-117A 81-10794 “Delta Dawn” made its first flight on Mar. 4, 1983. According to AviaMagazine.com, this aircraft was assigned to 415th TFS during Operation Desert Storm and logged 35 combat missions. In 1999 it was deployed to Spangdahlem, Germany with the 9th EFS. 29 combat missions in the former Yugoslavia were flown and 8 for Operation Iraqi Freedom. She was retired on Oct. 12, 2007.
After making her final flight in October 2007, the F-117A has found its retirement home at the Museum of Aviation.
The F-117 is the world’s first operational stealth aircraft. The Nighthawk is a single-seat, twin-engine stealth attack aircraft. Only 64 were ever built and first flew in 1981. The US Air Force (USAF) “Retired” the aircraft in 2008.
Although officially retired, many F-117s remain airworthy and are used to support limited research and training missions based on overall cost effectiveness and their ability to offer unique capabilities.
As of January 2021, the USAF had 48 F-117s remaining in its inventory, and is disposing of approximately four aircraft each year. As airframes are disposed, they are offered to museums though the USAF Strategic Basing program and the National Museum of the USAF.
However, as already reported, according to a Request For Information (RFI) published on Oct. 3, 2022, the Air Force Test Center is looking for suppliers with experience and capabilities to keep the F-117 Nighthawk flying until 2034.
Photo credit: Museum of Aviation