KC-46A To Account For 18.8% Of In-Service Global Tankers By 2030

Credit: Boeing

On Oct. 28 Japan took delivery of the first of four Boeing KC-46A Pegasus aerial refueling aircraft. The delivery is the first to an international customer, marking an important milestone for the program as it seeks to replicate its success in the U.S. with an expanded presence in export markets. Israel also has ordered four aircraft and is expected to increase that buy to eight over the coming years.

Even without additional sales, Aviation Week Network projections show the KC-46A fleet growing from 52 aircraft at present to 193 by 2030.

By that time the type will account for 18.8% of all the tankers in service globally, thanks largely to the sheer scale of the U.S. Air Force’s tanker fleet. As of 2021, the U.S. military as a whole accounts for 72.6% of all aerial refueling aircraft in service globally.