Broke From United States of America, joined Apr 2002, 1322 posts, RR: 3 Posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 2300 times:
Tankers and their crews are the unsung heros of many a pilot. I've heard stories of tankers hooking up with a fighter who ran out of fuel and had his engine die. The tanker descended with the fighter, refueled him, and he got home. There several stories from Viet Nam like this. There are stories of tankers going into Southern Iraq during Desert Storm to refuel a plane that wasn't going to get home if they didn't get fuel. I've talked with an A-10 pilot who came home because a tanker crew stuck their neck out, big time. Does anyone have any first person experiences like these or better?
Southflite From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2234 times:
The tanker adapted for refuelling the SR-71 Blackbird was the KC-135Q Stratotanker, all since re-engined to KC-135T standard. It wasn't dedicated to refuelling the SR-71 - it was capable of carrying the fuel that that aircraft needed, but could also carry "normal" fuel for other types.
Saintsman From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2002, 2065 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (12 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 2156 times:
Not first hand, but one of the most impressive tanker stories is the one that involved the Vulcan bombing the runway at Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands. To get it there and back, the tankers had to refuel tankers which refuelled tankers etc. That must have taken some co-ordinating. Does anyone know how many tanking operations occured?
Broke From United States of America, joined Apr 2002, 1322 posts, RR: 3
Reply 8, posted (12 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 2143 times:
References to the SR-71. Both the U-2 family and the SR-71's use (or used) JP-7. The reason for this special fuel is that at the altitudes these airplanes operate (or operated) their range would be restricted by the evaporation rate of the fuel (JP-4). So a fuel with a very low vapor pressure (JP-7) was developed. This fuel is also very difficult to light off; I know the SR-71's used a hypergolic (spelling?) ignition system in which a fluid, that ignites on contact with oxygen, is injected into the burner section (and the afterburner or reheat to Brits) and this ignites the fuel. If you see a film of either an engine start or an A/B light of a SR-71, look for the green flash before ignition. That is the hypergolic fluid lighting off. I don't know what type of ignition system the U-2's use.
KC-135's and KC-10's were adapted to carry this fuel. The KC-135Q is the SR-71 refueler.
I would still like to get some tanker stories, if anyone has some.