What is the current status of the C-17 drag reduction testing, and in which phase is it currently in?

The United States air force is one of the strongest compared to other countries. They have the best quality parts and have all the support they need to get from the government. They have one of the largest military transport aircraft which was manufactured and developed by McDonnell Douglas by Boeing. Boeing C-17 has been developing. It went through many 3 phases.

The most recent phase is the third phase. This specific Boeing C-17 performs a lot of tactical and strategic airlift missions.  This military transport has a four engine, it can carry large equipment, supplies and troops directly to destination anywhere in the world under hard weather conditions. It has been known to deliver worldwide since 1990. This final phase of the C-17 is going through final testing. Because it is such a large phase and it is one of the biggest that offers many services, it uses a lot of fuel therefore there has been many tests to see If the amount of fuel used can be lowered.

“A 1 percent improvement in drag reduction will result in 7.1 million gallons of fuel reduction per year,” said Bogdan Wozniak, the 418th FLTS, project engineer. “One to 2 percent drag reduction could translate to $24-48 million dollars in fuel savings per year.” There has been a lot of work for the past year to in the air research laboratory to try to reduce the amount of fuel that is used. The testing is currently happening using 3-D printed parts by Lockheed Martin. Which uses a combination of laser positioning, this is mainly done to be able to locate and seal bond the parts to aircrafts. And this helps to develop easier and faster way of testing which helps with the process to be more efficient.

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