RayChuang From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 7860 posts, RR: 5 Posted (11 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 2347 times:
This afternoon, I saw a mysterious white-fuselage 707 powered by CFM56 engines on the landing pattern to Moffett Federal Airfield in Mountain View, CA. Note that this is NOT an AWACS or JSTARS plane, as the plane lacks the distinctive antenna mounts of these two plane types. Also, the plane's livery was difficult to discern, as it looks like it does not have USAF markings.
Is it possible I may have just seen a US Navy E-6A TACAMO communications plane? One thing I did notice is that the plane flying over lacked the wingtip modifications of the E-7A. In short, I'm mystified.
Sunilgupta From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 774 posts, RR: 15 Reply 2, posted (11 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 2308 times:
There are lots of variants of the C-135 (717) that have CFM56 engines; however, on the 707 airframes I can only think of the E-6, some E-3s (UK, etc)... is there anything else? AFAIK there are no civilian 707 frames with CFM56 engines.
Lt-AWACS From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 3, posted (11 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 2286 times:
You probably did see the E-6A TACAMO (or 'mercury' but don't say that in our o'club) While the TACAMOs are based here at Tinker with us in AWACS they do fly to Moffet on occasion. If it had a small hump on top around the forward wing area it was a B Model, if not it was still an A (without the capes to talk to Air Force Missile assets).
The planes are all white with no big markings but a small finflash and tail code.
and Sunil there are a few CFM-56 707s in other AFs mainly modified Tankers.
RayChuang From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 7860 posts, RR: 5 Reply 4, posted (11 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 2284 times:
One of the reasons why I thought the plane that flew overhead was probably not an E-6 TACAMO was the fact the wingtips on the plane lacked the unusual fairings that are distinctive to the E-6A, unless the E-6B no longer has these fairings. The plane certainly sported CFM56 engines because I noted the wider front fan and larger nacelle and the very distinctive higher-pitched whine from the engines.